WHMI: Gregory Couple's Story Highlights Need Underlying OLHSA's "Walk For Warmth"

January 21, 2016

The Oakland Livingston Human Services Agency has event coming up to help families in need stay warm this winter. OLHSA’s 2016 Walk for Warmth will take place at the Hartland Education Center on Saturday, February 20th. One hundred percent of the proceeds from the event go to the agency’s emergency utility assistance program. The program is designed to help people get out of their utilities crisis and help set them on a path to self-sufficiency. Two people the program helped were Cathey and William Watt of Gregory who ran into trouble last winter when William became ill with a heart condition while the couple was caring for his mother who was suffering from Alzheimer’s. Cathey believes that one of the hardest obstacles they had to overcome was admitting that they needed help. In addition to helping with bills Cathey went through OLHSA’s program that she said taught her ways to make her house more energy efficient than she thought was possible. Thanks to the help, the Watts were able to keep their house heated until William was healthy enough to go back to work in the spring. OLHSA Director of Health, Housing, and Nutrition Services Erica Karfonta told WHMI that she could relate to the Watt’s story and was encouraged that they were willing to share it. She believes that heat and warmth is an entitlement that every family should have, and that when it’s missing, the ripple effect from it becomes noticeable. Last year’s Walk for Warmth event raised funds to help over 500 households in Livingston County. Registration for this year’s event begins at 8:30am on February 20th, with kick-off at 9. There will be a quarter-mile indoor loop for the walk-a-thon, with lots of activities for the whole family. For more information, or to register, visit the link below. Cathey will also be a guest this Sunday on Viewpoint at 8:30am. (MK/JK)

 

Read the story on WHMI's website here.