SPRINGFIELD, Mo. - Just as electric meters are spinning, local agencies are scrambling to help those in need.
"When the utilities do get cut off, it's already a bad situation. But when its 100 degrees outside, it just makes the situation worse," said Michelle McCoy, director of the One Door.
One Door is just one of the many charities offering utility assistance so folks, who are behind on their bills, can stay cool.
"Last month we had about 670 phone calls," McCoy explained. "Folks that are coming in are literally living on the streets in 100 degree weather, and sometimes with children, and the shelters are full."
That overwhelming need has drained what little money there was to begin with. McCoy said contributions from donors are down this year. Plus, more folks are giving to Joplin this year as opposed to more-local charities. The agency hopes donors will step forward in the coming days to keep the utility program afloat.
"We take applications on Monday mornings. We are probably only going to be able to help about three families. And we do get anywhere from 30 to 50 phone calls a day, McCoy said.
OACAC is faring better through the heat wave.
"We, thankfully, are still funded and have funding that should take us at least through the end of summer," said Alice Wingo, spokesperson for OACAC.
OACAC's energy assistance and weatherization programs are funded by the federal government. It's a more-dedicated, but not guaranteed, source.
"Of course we are waiting to see how all the funding issues in Washington play out because that could determine later with what happens with the program," Alice said.
OACAC said funding is also that allows it to weatherize resident's homes. The organization said it usually makes the modifications to about 200 per year. Current funding levels are allowing it to weatherize about 200 homes per month.
"Folks that are coming in, they are literally living on the streets in 100 degree weather, and sometimes with children, and the shelters are full."