Low-income families feel DHR#039;s warmth

Published 12:00 am Monday, January 3, 2005

The arctic chill of winter hit the Crenshaw County area hard last week.

Temperatures plummeted to the low 20's with wind chills registering in the lower teens.

The most important safety measure for residents to take is keeping warm, but that may be a hard task for some.

The Crenshaw County Department of Human Resources is offering a helping hand to those individuals in an emergency situation.

"We're asked to assist all the time," Crenshaw County Department of Human Resources (DHR) Director Paul Butler said. "Especially with families with small children. If a family's running real tight with their heating bill or electric bill and have very small children, we'll go ahead and assist them. It can't be one of those on going things. People can't come in every month."

But as for most non-profit organizations, the DHR can't assist everybody due to limited funds.

"There are some times we're not able to help, but we help when we can," Butler said. "If we don't have enough donations, we can only help with true emergencies if the funds are available."

With some additional assistance, Butler and his staff could possibly help more families stay warm this winter. The DHR is also asked to assist families during the summer months as well.

"We are sometimes asked to also help with elderly who are in need of assistance with their air conditioning bills," Butler said. "We help with energy bills on some very needy cases. We also handle project share, which is energy assistance during the winter months and last year we assisted about 70 families."

If you need assistance or want to offer assistance by donating fund to the DHR, call