The power to make a difference

SUMMERTIME IS officially here. Normally, by this time of year, our beautiful piece of South Carolina’s Lowcountry has been bustling with tourists for months. However, this year has looked a bit different due to COVID-19.

In the spring, businesses throughout our service area were forced to close due to COVID-19 restrictions, leading many laid off workers to seek financial assistance for the first time. When considering ideas of how we, as a cooperative, could help with the financial crisis caused by COVID-19, we reached out to local organizations that are familiar with the needs of our communities.

Sandy Gillis, executive director at Deep Well Project, located on Hilton Head Island, stated that since the pandemic began in mid-March, Deep Well has provided more than 1,800 families living on Hilton Head Island with a week’s worth of food supplies and 393 families with emergency rent and mortgage assistance.

Kimberly Hall, executive director at Bluffton Self Help, echoed Gillis’ words stating that since the pandemic began, the caseload at Bluffton Self Help has nearly matched last year’s total of about 1,000 people. And unfortunately, there are still needs to be met.

This is where the Give 5 campaign comes in. In early May, Palmetto Electric launched the Give 5 campaign, a voluntary initiative designed to help those in Hampton, Jasper and southern Beaufort counties faced with growing rent, mortgage, food, and utility bills as a result of the COVID-19 crisis.

We asked you, our members, to consider pledging at least a $5 donation on your electric bill for one month to help fund this initiative. Palmetto Electric Cooperative and Operation Round Up both agreed to match the donation amounts, up to $50,000 each.

I am humbled by the outpouring of support that this program has received. On June 23, the funds raised were divided equally among four local non-profit agencies: Deep Well, Bluffton Self Help, Beaufort/Jasper Economic Opportunity Commission, and United Ministries of Hampton.

Palmetto Electric Cooperative and Operation Round Up presented these organizations with checks of $20,729 each, totaling $82,916. The funds will be distributed by the four organizations, based on the Give 5 guidelines.

The need has been real, and by simply giving $5, we have had the opportunity to help get our neighbors back on their feet and heal our community. When everyone does their part with a $5 donation, it is amazing how those small donations can multiply.

Again, I just want to thank each of you who joined with us in our “neighbors helping neighbors” effort. It is because of you and your generosity that we can make a difference in the lives of others.

Virtual Safety Days Program, July 14-16

Due to COVID-19, Palmetto Electric Cooperative will not host its annual Safety Days programs in July.  But Linny still wants to show kids how to “Play it Safe!” We encourage all children to join us, July 14-16, online at palmetto.coop or on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube where we will show daily activities and safety videos.

Local students participate in Virtual Youth Experience

Local students participate in Virtual Youth Experience Congratulations to the six high school sophomores and juniors chosen to represent Palmetto Electric Cooperative on the 2020 Washington Youth Tour (WYT) and Cooperative Youth Summit (CYS). Although these students were not physically able to go to Washington D.C. or Columbia due to COVID-19 restrictions, they did haveContinue Reading

Powering plaid traditions the green way

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. – For 12 years, the RBC Heritage Presented by Boeing has teamed up with Palmetto Electric Cooperative and Santee Cooper to power the state’s largest sporting event with 100% homegrown, environmentally sound Green Power. The emergence of public health concerns related to COVID-19 delayed this year’s tournament. After some adjustments toContinue Reading

Neighbors helping neighbors

NEIGHBORS HELPING NEIGHBORS is what the cooperative spirit is all about.  We at Palmetto Electric Cooperative know that our members and the communities we serve have been facing unprecedented challenges and financial hardships as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.  Throughout America, we have seen small businesses close their doors, hard-working individuals lose their jobsContinue Reading

The cooperative spirit in action

In the early morning hours of Monday, April 13, an unprecedented E-F4 tornado tore through the rural communities of Hampton County, bringing destruction unlike anything this area had seen before. The storm wreaked havoc on our system and caused more than 6,500 outages throughout southern Beaufort, Hampton and Jasper counties. Problems were found at threeContinue Reading

5/29 COVID Update + Lobby Reopenings

From the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Palmetto Electric Cooperative has remained committed to providing safe and reliable electric service, as well as protecting our employees, members and community. In response to Governor McMaster’s announcement of South Carolina’s “accelerateSC” plan, Palmetto Electric Cooperative will reopen our district office lobbies, beginning June 1, with a strongContinue Reading

Cooperation during a crisis

OUR COMMUNITY has a long history of coming together in times of crisis.  From hurricanes to the recent coronavirus pandemic, we have faced our fair share of challenges together.   As we deal with the new realities brought on by the coronavirus, I first want to assure you that your cooperative is here for you.  We remain committedContinue Reading

Bad times are good times for scammers

THERE IS NEVER a good time for a scam, unless you are a scam artist. A pandemic like COVID-19 creates opportunities for utility scams as criminals prey upon their victims’ fears.  Scammers may threaten you with everything from legal action to turning off power to your home. Utility scams can involve an individual posing asContinue Reading