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UGI Connection

a blog from UGI Utilities, Inc.

Making a Difference in Our Communities

DSC 0242 581x720 e9e9a345 d51b 48d3 9f7e 598383a519f2 242x300 - Making a Difference in Our CommunitiesFor UGI employees, being a volunteer is more than just giving time or money to organizations in our communities. It’s about truly making a difference in the lives of others and building a better, brighter future for everyone.

Wrapping up our National Volunteer Week celebrations, Lori Hoffman, UGI Community Relations Coordinator, shares why she’s passionate about giving back to the communities she lives and works in.

What has been the most meaningful volunteer project/initiative/event you participated in in 2017? 

I’m proud to work for a company that supports employees’ involvement in the community!  Two of my favorite events from 2017 are the Olivet Boys and Girls Club Center for the Arts holiday party, hosted by one of UGI’s Reading-based employee engagement committees, and the annual Cups of Compassion in Downtown Reading.

I personally volunteer as a mentor at the Olivet Club have had the chance to get to know the students and interact with them on a weekly basis.  I loved seeing how much fun the kids had playing games, singing karaoke carols, and having photos taken at  the photo booth, as well as the joy and excitement they had seeing Santa and Mrs. Claus!

DSC 0277 preview 300x201 - Making a Difference in Our CommunitiesThe Cups of Compassion event is held annually just before Christmas, and brings the community together in Downtown Reading to help those in need during the holiday season.  Hundreds of individuals, businesses, and organizations participate in the event by handing out donations of clothing, food and toiletries as well as providing services and resources to local assistance.  Being on the committee that organizes this event each year, It is very humbling to know that an estimated 1,000 individuals in need attend this event to receive even the basic needs.  Seeing this community come together in such a big way to offer assistance is so inspiring to me.

There is no greater gift than to give.  To me, this is what the holidays are all about.

 If you could have dinner with any humanitarian (living or deceased) who would it be and why?

Lanc DOC3 405x720 7fdeb9e6 b54e 41d0 94e5 041b5fca24d5 169x300 - Making a Difference in Our CommunitiesHow do you pick just one?  There are so many people doing that have done (and are doing) great things to make the world a better place.  One person comes to mind immediately, and that is Ellen DeGeneres.  She promotes compassion and human rights in a world that could use much more of both.  And, I am a fan of her television show which constantly tells the story of individuals and organizations in need as well as recognizes people who are making a difference.  Seeing Ellen sharing their stories and then helping them with contributions is both inspiring and encouraging!  Besides all of the good work she does, she is equally as funny!

On a local level, Craig Poole of the DoubleTree hotel here in Downtown Reading is doing great things for the Reading area.  Craig is a well-respected person in our community who is committed to bringing positive change and is leading this change by example.  Living here all of my life, I want to be part of this positive change and would certainly be even more inspired to do so after talking with Craig.

ELU trunk or treat 225x300 - Making a Difference in Our CommunitiesWhat are you favorite types of volunteer activities?

Volunteering isn’t something I do; volunteering is who I am.  I enjoy giving back and being involved in the community however I can, especially activities that involved children and young adults.  From participating in UGI’s RIF program to mentoring and tutoring students at local schools and organizations, can all have a lasting impact and positive influence on someone’s life.  And that is a feeling like no other.

What are your community goals for 2018?

UGI has a number of committees across the service territory that provides ways for employees to get involved in the community, including volunteer projects and raising funds and collecting items for local organizations.  My goal is to get more employees input into the types of projects that we do and organizations that we support, as well as to help employees lead these events.

Follow UGI Utilities on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter as we celebrate and share our favorite volunteer moments all week long. To learn more about UGI’s involvement in your community, visit us online at www.ugi.com/community.

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Volunteering in UGI’s North Region

20180118 184626 720x405 7e582c16 febe 468f 8e62 f76ebf5f72d3 300x169 - Volunteering in UGI's North RegionNational Volunteer Week is more than just a week to honor our employee volunteers. It’s also a time to highlight and acknowledge the various organizations that provide necessary and invaluable services to our communities.

Ann Blaskiewicz, UGI Community Relations Manager, North Region, talks to the UGI Social Team about the events and organizations she’s most passionate about in UGI’s North Region.

How does your role as community relations manager impact UGI?

We promote awareness of UGI and overall support the mission of the Company to provide high quality service in the communities we serve.

Mrs obrien 2 7 17 720x480 4974ca90 94fa 474a b19f f066261b26aa 300x200 - Volunteering in UGI's North RegionWhat would you like UGI employees and customers to know most about the work the Community Relations team does?

As a Company we dedicate over $1 million to education-related initiatives, including Reading Is Fundamental. The excitement a child has when someone comes into their classroom to read a book is heartwarming.

All of these little moments are big deals in the life of a first grader and UGI has helped make this happen.

Why were you drawn to your role at UGI?

It is rewarding to know you are making a difference and representing UGI in the communities we service.

203 300x239 - Volunteering in UGI's North RegionWhat is your favorite community program, initiative, or event you’ve been involved with?

One is the United Way of Wyoming Valley Christmas in July Food Drive. Seeing the operation of the food bank is amazing.

Growing up in a large family has always left me with an appreciation for how hard it can be to put food on table and this inspires me to always try to collect one more pound of food.

Follow UGI Utilities on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter as we celebrate and share our favorite volunteer moments all week long. To learn more about UGI’s involvement in your community and how you can request a contribution for an organization in your community, visit us online at www.ugi.com/community.

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Strengthening Communities in UGI’s West Region

CASEF Photo 576x720 03f95918 804f 4c75 b524 44d1058b26b4 240x300 - Strengthening Communities in UGI's West RegionUGI continues our National Volunteer Week celebrations with Tammie Lowry, UGI Community Relation Manager, West Region.

From fostering a sense of community and philanthropy within the UGI family to volunteering with school and community organizations, Tammie shares what motivates her to give back.

How does your role as community relations manager impact UGI?

From an employee standpoint, my goal is to assist in establishing UGI’s corporate culture that values and embraces employee diversity and conveys a sense of family.

From a community standpoint, my goal is to establish and strengthen partnerships in areas of education, workforce development, disaster relief and environmental initiatives.

IMG 9894 720x592 13a5e6a9 5e24 445f 9e31 52de928c524f 300x247 - Strengthening Communities in UGI's West RegionWhat would you like UGI employees and customers to know most about the work the Community Relations team does?

We value and welcome your input and feedback and we thank you for all that you do in supporting UGI and community initiatives. You are difference makers.

Why were you drawn to your role at UGI?

Life experiences drew me and prepared me for this role. I believe we all have a responsibility to help our fellow man and my role provides the vehicle to fulfill that sense of responsibility.

WSRM 11 17 17 405x720 a931ed98 c87e 4b3e ab54 c9f3bc45bc11 e1523976143418 260x300 - Strengthening Communities in UGI's West RegionWhat is your favorite community program, initiative, or event you’ve been involved with?

Each one provides different levels of gratification but the common thread I enjoy most is the comradery and the friendships I’ve made. We share in the satisfaction and knowledge that we are making a difference.

Follow UGI Utilities on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter as we celebrate and share our favorite volunteer moments all week long. To learn more about UGI’s involvement in your community, visit us online at www.ugi.com/community.

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Giving Back in UGI’s East Region

UGI and Just Born 720x540 37af8da6 f376 4338 a0d1 508e32c1460b 300x225 - Giving Back in UGI's East RegionIn honor of National Volunteer Week, UGI’s Social Media Team sat down with Thea Phalon, UGI Community Relations Manager, East Region, to talk about her involvement with employees and the communities UGI serves.

How does your role as community relations manager impact UGI?

We’re the face of the company for many of our constituents. We have the opportunity to build and strengthen the image of UGI to our customers.

What would you like UGI employees and customers to know most about the work the Community Relations team does?

20170427 094805 001 2 720x509 72 RGB 1 300x212 - Giving Back in UGI's East RegionWhat matters to you in your community, matters to UGI. If you have a volunteer project idea or would like to request a contribution for an organization that’s close to your heart, send it to us.

We want to engage employees around the issues that matter to them and in turn, better serve our communities.

Why were you drawn to your role at UGI?

I love working with the people and being out in the community.

Avenues 3 469x640 15387748 f6b0 4084 8480 6803604344f8 220x300 - Giving Back in UGI's East RegionWhat is your favorite community program, initiative, or event you’ve been involved with?

My favorite is United Way Day of Caring. I go to many offices to work on projects in those communities. I love working with the employees and getting to know the various communities.

Follow UGI Utilities on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter as we celebrate and share our favorite volunteer moments all week long. To learn more about UGI’s involvement in your community, visit us online at www.ugi.com/community.

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UGI Celebrates National Volunteer Week 2018

Keith Red Cross 300x200 - UGI Celebrates National Volunteer Week 2018

Keith Dorman, UGI Vice President, Communications & Community Relations, speaks at an American Red Cross smoke alarm installation event.

I’m pleased to announce UGI will once again join companies across the country in our annual celebration of National Volunteer Week from April 15-21, 2018.

National Volunteer Week provides an opportunity for us to recognize and thank our employees who donated their time, resources, and support to causes they care about in their community.

Over the past year, hundreds of UGI employee volunteers supported fundraising events, food drives, meal deliveries to home-bound individuals, reading and literacy programs, and served as volunteer firefighters and emergency response personnel. UGI will honor our employee volunteers throughout the week with appreciation breakfasts and lunches, as well as a volunteer gift.

Based on recent feedback provided by employees regarding organizations that are important to them, UGI’s Community Relations Team will also conduct a special collection to benefit homeless Veterans in our communities. In addition, various projects and volunteer opportunities will be available to employees interested in demonstrating their community support throughout the month.

UGI has a long history of engagement in the communities where we live and work. From supporting early childhood literacy and STEM education programs to social and emergency services, we are committed to enhancing the quality of life for every resident in the region. Thank you to every one of our volunteers for the work you do throughout the year to make our company and our communities better today and stronger tomorrow!

– Keith Dorman, VP Communications & Community Relations

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Look Up And Live: Overhead Power Lines

Protect your family and your home

AdobeStock 132543119 300x200 - Look Up And Live: Overhead Power LinesWarm weather is almost here! It is important to be aware of overhead power lines providing service at various voltages to our homes as we begin to head outdoors to trim our trees and clean out gutters.

Contact with an overhead wire with your body or conductive objects such as ladders, poles, and antennae can cause serious injury or death. Always remember to “look up and live” when working around or near power lines – it could save your life!

Follow these tips to stay safe around power lines:
  • Keep ladders, platforms, tools, and equipment at least 10 feet away from any wires to avoid the potential for power outages, fire, and serious injury.
  • Know where power lines are at all times. If you are working on your roof, windows, siding or rain gutters keep yourself, tools and equipment at least 10 feet away from any wires. Greater distances are required for higher voltage transmission lines.
    AdobeStock 83950762 300x200 - Look Up And Live: Overhead Power Lines
  • Exercise caution when operating scissor lifts or building scaffolding near power lines.
  • Keep kites, drones, helium filled balloons, and remote control aircraft away from overhead electric lines to avoid the potential for power outages, fires and serious injuries.
  • If a balloon or toy is caught in a power line, contact UGI immediately at 1-800-276-2722 to report the problem. Never attempt to retrieve anything that is on or near a power line.

Have a concern about working near power lines? Contact UGI at 800-276-2722 to see if additional steps are necessary to provide a safe working environment. To learn more about electrical safety and safe digging, visit us online at www.ugi.com/safety.

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Celebrate National Safe Digging Month

Every 9 minutes an underground utility is damaged because someone didn’t make the call to 8-1-1.

811 Logo 300x297 - April is National Safe Digging MonthIn an effort to raise awareness about the importance of having underground utility lines marked in advance of a digging project, April has been established as National Safe Digging Month.

Established by the Common Ground Alliance, the initiative focuses on safe digging practices to help homeowners prevent unnecessary property damage, injuries, or utility service outages.

“’Know what’s below’ is simple phrase that can make a significant difference,” Hans Bell, UGI Chief Operating Officer, said. “Striking a single line can cause injury, repair costs, fines and outages that inconvenience communities. In fact, third-party excavation damage is the number one cause of natural gas pipeline damage involving death or serious injury. National Safe Digging Month provides us an opportunity to remind homeowners and contractors to call 8-1-1 before digging to prevent the risk of striking an underground utility line.”

In Pennsylvania, homeowners are required by law to make a FREE call to 8-1-1 to notify utility companies at least three business days before you plan to dig.  So, whether you’re planning to build a new deck, install a mailbox, or landscape your property, make sure you get your utility lines marked.

AdobeStock 83237585 300x169 - Celebrate National Safe Digging Month

Are you ready to make the call? Here’s what you’ll need to know before you dig: 

  • Your telephone number
  • Your mailing address
  • County where work will take place
  • Municipality where work will take place
  • The address where work will take place
  • The nearest intersecting street to the worksite
  • The name of a second intersection near the worksite
  • Is the proposed excavation area marked in white? Yes or no
  • Other information that would help the locator find the site
  • The type of work being done
  • Whether the work will take place in the street, sidewalk, public or private property
  • The approximate depth you are digging
  • The extent of the excavation
  • The method of extraction
  • Who is the work being done for?
  • Person to contact if the utilities have questions
  • The contact person’s phone number
  • The best time to call
  • Fax number and/or email address
  • Scheduled excavation date and start time – no less than 3 business days and no more than 10 business days
  • Duration of job
  • Any additional remarks you may have

To learn more about safe digging practices and working around your utility lines, visit www.ugi.com/811 today.

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Making Science Fun with S.P.A.R.K.S.

sparks logoIn recognition of National Volunteer Week and our employees’ commitment to the communities in which they live and work, we’re proud to highlight the S.P.A.R.K.S. Foundation (Science Projects are Really Kids’ Stuff) as our April Featured Community Organization. The S.P.A.R.K.S. Foundation is funded in part by the more than $1 million UGI donates each year to STEM initiatives.

DSC 0435 622x720 eae865f4 58ed 4a9e 88c4 3b2c811350b2 259x300 - Making Science Fun with S.P.A.R.K.S.This funding enables the S.P.A.R.K.S. Foundation to provide an exciting and hands-on science program to fill in the gaps of current education. With each lesson, S.P.A.R.K.S. educators strive to bring back the wonder of science to students, having them hypothesize as they experiment and learn.

Additionally, the Foundation offers low cost, hands-on science and nature programs on a monthly basis, as well as encourages STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) learning outside of the classroom.

 
UGI volunteers are instrumental in fostering an interest in science to children in classrooms throughout our service territory. Employees assist students as they conduct experiments ranging from mixing two liquids to make a solid, to making glowing slime, to launching a rocket.

DSC 0432 720x528 eaca8eb7 195b 4867 afda f8bd2a127f42 300x220 - Making Science Fun with S.P.A.R.K.S.“My favorite part about the S.P.A.R.K.S. program is the joy and enthusiasm the kids experience. One girl, as she was leaving, told me she wanted to be a scientist when she grew up. S.P.A.R.K.S. is making a positive impact in these children’s lives,” said volunteer “Radioactive” Rob Kachmar (shown above.)

In 2017, more than 700 UGI employees devoted more than 60,000 hours to organizations such as S.P.A.R.K.S. We will celebrate our employees’ efforts during National Volunteer Week, from April 15-24, 2018.

Follow UGI Utilities on Facebook (@UGIUtilities) and Instagram (@ugiutilities) during Volunteer Week to see our employee volunteers in action.

 

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UGI’s Save Smart Program Offers Electric Customers Big Savings

eaudit 300x200 - UGI's Save Smart Program Offers Electric Customers Big Savings

Spring is here and now’s the time to make the energy upgrades your home needs.

UGI’s Save Smart energy efficiency rebate program offers UGI Electric customers opportunities to save energy and money on their utility bills.

 

  • Home Energy Assessment Program

    Get a FREE home energy assessment by a certified energy professional and also receive these direct install measures: up to 10 LEDs, 2 water aerators, a smart strip, energy efficient shower head, and pipe insulation! For more information, call 1-866-691-1355. Click here to schedule your energy assessment.

  • Appliance Recycling Program

    UGI Electric will pay you $50 to get rid of that old, inefficient refrigerator or freezer. We will also pay you $15 to recycle your room air conditioner along with your refrigerator or freezer. Schedule your pickup today.

  • Appliance Rebates Program

    Reduce your energy costs with high-efficiency appliances. Purchase and install eligible, high efficiency equipment and you’ll get generous rebates up to $350! Click here for your rebate application.

Have a question about UGI’s Save Smart energy efficiency and conservation programs? Email us at savesmart@ugi.com today!

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March Little Reader Pick

Spring is finally here! In celebration of leaves returning to trees and flowers in bloom, UGI has selected Living Sunlight: How Plants Bring the Earth to Life as our March Little Reader Pick.

Written by Molly Bang and Penny Chisholm, Living Sunlight introduces young readers to the remarkable process of photosynthesis and how the sun provides light and energy to fuel our planet. Combining the beauty of art with the fascinating world of science, Living Sunlight teaches children about energy and how we are all connected in nature through the sun’s light.

Living Sunlight book cover

 

Bring the wonders of earth science to life for your little reader. Pick up a copy of Living Sunlight: How Plants Bring the Earth to Life at your local library.

Finished reading Living Sunlight? Continue your child’s learning with a printable, interactive word search from Reading Is Fundamental. Download your word search today.

UGI Little Reader Pick of the Month

At UGI Utilities, we are deeply committed to children’s literacy. Studies have shown that children who are not reading at grade level by third grade will experience significant difficulties throughout their lives. Today’s students will be tomorrow’s business and government leaders, employees and customers.

Check back each month for new Little Reader picks and follow @ugi_utilities on Twitter for more book selections, author quotes, and tips and tricks to help your own little reader. Have a suggestion for a Little Reader Pick? Let us know in the comments below.

Happy Reading!

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