'Save to Give' celebration

Focus on Energy’s “Save To Give Challenge” raised more than $10,000 for three Lodi charities, as checks were presented at the Susie the Duck Day event on Aug. 14. Those pictured here include: (left to right) Jennie Larsen (Prairie Valley Resale Store), Melissa Walsh (Lodi PTO), Brady Steigauf (Focus on Energy), Susie the Duck, Mayor Ann Groves-Lloyd, Mary Wilkes (Reach Out Lodi), and Erin Soman (Focus on Energy).

Focus On Energy’s “Save to Give Challenge” ended for Lodi residents with a celebration, a check presentation during Susie the Duck Day, and an announcement from a Lodi nonprofit.

The “Save to Give Challenge” allowed residents to earn donations for three Lodi nonprofits, including Reach Out Lodi, Prairie Valley Resale Store, Lodi Parent-Teacher Organization, by taking energy-saving actions inside their homes.

At the event, Prairie Valley Resale Store announced the donation they received, nearly $5,000 in total, paid for three months of rent allowing them to remain open for the community.

“The pandemic just shredded us,” Jennie Larson, store manager of Prairie Valley Resale Store told the crowd. “This is good to know that we have three more months that we don’t have to sweat it out and worry. This is incredible. Thank you, Lodi!”

Lodi has participated in two Save to Give Challenge campaigns, one in the winter and one in the summer. The winter campaign focused on winter energy-saving actions, such as turning down thermostats at night, turning off lights when not needed, and installing items such as low-flow shower heads and LED bulbs provided by Focus on Energy. This campaign had 116 participants who raised $6,000 for Lodi’s nonprofits.

The summer campaign focused on summer energy-saving strategies, such as opening windows at night and using fans instead of air conditioning. A total of 138 residents participated in the summer campaign, and they raised a total of $4,018. In addition to the money raised by the participants, Lodi Utilities in partnership with WPPI Energy donated $2,100 split evenly among the three nonprofits.

“Through the Save to Give Challenge we were able to raise money to support our local nonprofits, while also promoting saving energy in our community. It was a win-win,” said Lodi Mayor Ann Groves Lloyd. “We saw great community participation in the challenge, and in the end, we were able to raise $10,018. We have a community where our residents are conscious of the impact we have on our planet, and we’re always looking for ways to leave a lighter footprint on our beautiful valley.”

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Prairie Valley Resale Store received $4,931.96, Reach Out Lodi received $4,344.77, and Lodi Parent Teacher Organization received $741.26.

Over the course of the last year 138 households – or 12% of those eligible – signed up for the energy behavior pilot.

“Twelve percent is among the highest community participation we’re aware of for behavioral programs,” said Brady Steigauf, Community Energy Specialist at Focus on Energy. “There are a lot of reasons to celebrate how special Lodi is as a community, but Susie the Duck Day is a wonderful time to appreciate the passion residents had in saving energy to support local organizations they love.”

Even though the campaigns have ended, the “Save to Give Challenge” will have a lasting impact on the Lodi community. In a survey completed near the end of the second campaign, 58.8% of participants reported they have learned new ways to save energy and plan to continue taking more energy-saving actions in the future.

Focus on Energy partners with 107 utilities offering energy expertise and financial incentives to reduce energy waste. A recent independent evaluation found every $1 invested in Focus on Energy generates $4.32 in benefits for Wisconsin residents and businesses.

For more information call 800.762.7077 or visit www.focusonenergy.com.

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