Daemen Students Assist in Weatherization Project
Daemen Students Assist in Weatherizing 50 Homes in Buffalo October 13
Initiative is Also a Service Learning Project
October 18, 2012
Contacts: Mike Andrei
Contact: Susan Marchione, Ed.D.
Service Learning Coordinator
(office) 716.839.8447 (cell) 716.863.8678
Daemen College service learning students, campus clubs/organizations, along with clean energy activists and community volunteers, joined WNY Apollo Alliance and union members of District Council #4 to help weatherize homes and provide energy related assistance for low-income homeowners in Buffalo's North and North East neighborhoods.
The volunteer service project was sponsored by the Daemen Center for Sustainable Communities and Civic Engagement and the Daemen Department of Service Learning. Volunteers utilized fall Home Energy Conservation Kits (HECK) provided by Apollo Alliance to assist homeowners. The green initiative accomplished a great deal with extremely limited resources. Volunteer teams checked furnace filters and thermostats on hot water tanks, and inspected for major problems. They also caulked, sealed, and weatherstripped where needed, and educated homeowners on how to be energy-efficient and save money through State programs.
“There are a great many people living in Buffalo’s neighborhoods who are not able to afford the supplies to weatherize their homes each winter,” said Cheryl Bird, Executive Director of the Daemen College Center for Sustainable Communities and Civic Engagement. “Each year this project provides a wonderful opportunity for Daemen students and classes to assist 50 homeowners in making their homes safe and more energy-efficient for the upcoming winter.”
“This initiative not only enables us to assist low-income families in the goal of lowering their heating bills, it is also a service learning project,” stated Daemen College Service Learning Coordinator Susan Marchione, Ed.D.
“The point is to change a student’s mind regarding their responsibility to the well-being of the community. The goal of Daemen’s service learning program is to instill in students a lifelong commitment to addressing problems faced by communities. Projects such as this make our students think beyond their own reality and gain a more global perspective. Service learning makes you think about it. Hopefully it will be a transformative experience for the students.”
Bird pointed out that the energy savings for homeowners made as a result of weatherization improvements can be significant. “This is a great way to reduce energy consumption, and help minimize home energy costs,” she said.
“We accomplish this by assisting homeowners in weatherstripping their doors and windows, insulating hot water heaters and pipes, sealing cracks, and installing compact fluorescent light bulbs. Carbon monoxide detectors, now mandated by Amanda’s Law, were distributed to the participating homeowners courtesy of the Amanda Hansen Foundation and Amanda’s father, Ken Hansen.
“Homeowners were also given information about other ways to save energy, which simultaneously cut utility bills and pollution.”
Additional sponsors and donors to this project included Buffalo Common Council Members Richard Fontana and David Franczyk; Honeywell Inc.; Painters D.C. #4 of WNY-CNY; The Knoer Group, PLLC; West Side Neighborhood Housing Services (a Neighbor Works Chartered Member); Partnership for the Public Good; University District Community Development Association; Amanda Hansen Foundation; and WNY Energy $mart Communities.