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February 09, 2021 @ 12:00am

River 2 Ridge Disaster Resilience Group Energy Assistance Partnership with KWW/CF

Local Non-profit provides $30,000 in assistance for those in need in a four-county area

The River 2 Ridge Disaster Resilience Group (R2R) partnered with the Keep Wisconsin Warm/Cool Fund in October to provide $30,000 of energy assistance relief to residents in Vernon, Monroe, Crawford, and LaCrosse counties in Wisconsin.

While the R2R mission is to provide flood recovery relief for individuals and businesses, the pandemic of 2020 caused them to expand their crisis relief efforts.


“When you look at our mission in a broader sense, it speaks to helping people recover from a natural disaster or community crisis,” said R2R board member chair Julie Nelson, who is also the Community Engagement Coordinator for the Great Rivers United Way.

The Covid-19 pandemic fit their definition of a community crisis, as its effect was felt by nearly everyone in their service area. A moratorium that blocked the shutting down of electrical power was set to expire on October 1, creating a gap of time before the winter shut off rule would go into effect. This gap concerned R2R, so they set out to find a partner that could help them provide energy assistance to individuals who faced getting their power cut off.

“This (pandemic) has left many in our area without the needed income to meet their needs,” said Michele Engh, board vice-chair of R2R. “We continue to raise funds, knowing that the reality of disasters in our areas leaves many people with a lack of resources.”

The Keep Wisconsin Warm/Cool Fund’s ability to target and process the needs of individuals in crisis made for a perfect partnership with R2R.

“The Keep Wisconsin Warm/Cool Fund was a dream to work with, making it very easy for us to make payments for the people who would benefit from it,” said Nelson. For more information about River 2 Ridge Disaster Resilience Group please visit

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