Operation Round Up® reaches $2 Million milestone
December 21, 2017
Grand Rapids, MN – Lake Country Power is celebrating a milestone with its Operation Round Up® program this month. The cooperative’s member-driven charitable giving program has surpassed $2 Million in contributions after its Trust Board approved more than $46,000 in contributions to local community programs in December.
Since the program’s inception in October 2004, $2,026,915.10 has been distributed to hundreds of community-based projects and programs.
The success of Operation Round Up® is credited to the 69 percent of Lake Country Power members who participate in the program by lending a helping hand to the communities and residents of northern Minnesota.
Operation Round Up® is a charitable program unique to electric co-ops, which is designed to provide financial assistance to worthwhile activities and community projects by “rounding up” member’s electric bills to the nearest dollar. The average donation of each participating Lake Country Power member is less than $6 annually.
“It’s a joy to serve on the Operation Round Up trust board, review the applications each quarter, and see what types of community programs are doing so much good for our local communities,” said Yvette Schultenover, Operation Round Up Trust Board member. “It’s great to know how our members’ pennies are being put to good use in so many different and unique ways.”
Contributions are provided each quarter to community organizations. The cooperative’s Trust Board reviewed and considered 45 grant applications and distributed funds to 39 projects and programs this past quarter.
The Remer Volunteer Fire Department received $2,000 toward its new fire hall project. The project involves purchasing and installing a new industrial washing machine for heavy duty washing of fire retardant clothing for volunteer fire fighters. Studies show that if clothing is not washed properly, the chemicals within the clothing may cause cancer to the individuals wearing the safety gear.
“Everyone on the department is grateful for this grant,” said Kristian Myers, a volunteer fire fighter in Remer. “Without this funding, we wouldn’t be able to purchase the type of clothes washer, and it’s so important given the link to cancer. Thank you!”
All funds generated through Operation Round Up are set aside in a trust fund. A voluntary Trust Board of nine co-op members administers the Trust. Of the funds collected through the program, 100 percent is distributed to charitable organizations through an application and selection process. The trust board uses special guidelines and policies when choosing recipients.
“Everyone on the trust board takes their role very seriously, and it’s an enjoyable, bonding experience to serve,” said Marsha Doten, Operation Round Up Trust Board member. “It’s nice to help the programs and projects that really need the funds and are making a positive difference in our communities.”
Interested members can opt into the Operation Round Up program by calling Lake Country Power at 800-421-9959 or using an online form at lakecountrypower.coop.
Most Recent Recipients
Balsam Township Volunteer Fire Fighter’s Relief
Jamie Tennison Memorial Compass Program
Grand Rapids Amateur Lacrosse Association
Lutheran Social Service of MN Senior Nutrition
Itasca County Agricultural Association
City of Remer Soo Line Pavilion
Cherry High School Band & Speech/One Act
Faith in Action for Cass County
Aitkin County Triad
Veterans on the Lake Resort
City of Cromwell
Hope Lutheran Church
Second Harvest North Central Food Bank
Patchwork Pals Plus
American Association of Women
Boundary Waters Choral Festival 2018
Itasca County Historical Society
Grace House of Itasca County
City of Meadowlands ambulance
Remer Volunteer Fire Department
Itasca County Habitat for Humanity
Cromwell-Wright 7th-8th Grace Science
Twelfth Step House, Inc.
Minnesota Folklore Theater
Voyageurs Area Council
Remer Area Ambulance Service
ElderCircle Adult Day Service
ElderCircle dementia friends presentation
ElderCircle Guardianship Program
Ely Winter Festival
The Salvation Army of Hibbing
Fairview Range Medical Center
Mesabi Symphony Orchestra
Ely Folk School
Operation Round Up® is a charitable program unique to electric cooperatives. It provides financial assistance to worthwhile activities and community projects by “rounding up” member’s electric bills to the nearest dollar. The most members could possible contribute in a one-year period is $11.88.
Applications are available online at www.lakecountrypower.coop. The next application deadline is February 15.