On March 7th, First Baptist hosted the kickoff for the Neighborhood Energy Saver Program with Duke Energy. The City of Greenville Community Development Division and Green Ribbon Advisory Committee Energy and Buildings Subcommittee are partnering with Duke Energy, the Nicholtown Neighborhood Association, Sustaining Way, Furman CCC and Sustainable X to offer the Duke Energy Savers Program to residents living in the Nicholtown neighborhood. Over 200 residents attended the introductory meeting. Duke staff members will be visiting residents (owners and renters) and offering to complete minor weatherization improvements including wrapping the water heater and adjusting the thermostat, if needed. Additional work includes caulking around windows and doors and replacing light bulbs. Duke Energy representatives note that these improvements will save residents on their energy expenses. The partners have also planned two workshops, March 23 and June 1, to provide additional information on weatherization programs available to residents and tips for reducing their energy usage. These weatherization improvements are expected to benefit around seventy percent of the houses in Nicholtown and the project is expected to be completed in 2-3 months and will assist the residents of Nicholtown to make their neighborhood more efficient and sustainable.

In early March, First Baptist partnered with Nicholtown Missionary Baptist Church to provide one hundred twenty-four tons of gravel for additional parking at their church.

Extensive renovations of the Phillis Wheatley Center are nearing completion, and it will reopen in the summer. The facility now has a new roof, electrical wiring, heating and air, and kitchen.

Fourteen hundred students from Passport Mission Camp will be coming to Greenville again this summer. Over the course of three weeks, they will be working on projects throughout Greenville with several in Nicholtown. They will be painting houses, repairing floors, building handicap ramps, landscaping grounds and other projects throughout the city. All of their work assists our partnership with Nicholtown and improvements in the neighborhood.

Funding for these projects and other Nicholtown improvement projects come from the proceeds from the annual First Baptist Yard Sale. Thank you for supporting First Baptist’s Neighborhood Partnerships during the Yard Sale and throughout the year.

— Frank

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