SCE Community Forums Raise Public Awareness

The day-long forums offer an opportunity for community groups and non-profits to learn more about the utility’s programs.

July 15, 2013 | By Susan Cox

From safety and Flex Alerts, to applying for an Edison grant and learning about Cooling Centers, community members and nonprofit representatives recently came to hear about Southern California Edison’s programs at a community forum in Carson.

“Our nonprofit and community-based organizations are trusted leaders and partners in the communities SCE serves,” explained Qiana Charles, SCE manager of Strategic Engagement. “These forums put a face on the company and they’ve evolved into something very positive over the years. We’re helping our communities succeed.”

At these day-long forums, SCE representatives provide information about the company’s programs and services so attendees can take what they’ve learned back to their communities, often comprised of underrepresented and low-income residents.

Since 2010, these community forums have been held throughout the year and cover SCE’s vast service area. This year there have been over 30 community forums organized in communities such as Carson, San Bernardino, Tulare, Santa Barbara, Cathedral City, Long Beach, Santa Ana and Lancaster.

“In order to help our nonprofits succeed, we also provide Capacity Building Workshops facilitated by experienced professionals in the field,” said Tammy Tran, who organized the forum. “Participants are able to learn and walk away with tools and resources on financial accountability, board development and fundraising strategies.”

At the June 28 forum, SCE representatives made presentations on safety around downed power lines, Income-Qualified Programs such as the California Alternate Rates for Energy (CARE) and Family Electric Rate Assistance (FERA), which provide eligible customers with a monthly discount on their electricity bill.

Information was also shared about SCE’s Cooling Centers, the Friendly Reminder Program that alerts customers about planned outages, the Medical Baseline Program, the Energy Assistance Fund and the Energy Savings Assistance Program (ESAP), which offers incentives to customers who sign up for SCE conservation programs.

Tammy Tumbling, director of Philanthropy and Community Investments, discussed Edison International’s philanthropic grant program, how to apply for a grant and what makes an award-winning grant.

This year, she said, Edison International will give $19.7 million in shareholder dollars back to SCE communities as they relate to education, the environment, public safety and civic engagement.

“This is about how Edison can partner with nonprofits beyond dollars. It’s about a partnership and the fact that we’re in it together.” 

Audience members also heard about SCE’s Summer Readiness campaign, Flex Alerts and the importance of conserving energy this summer, expected to be one of the hottest in recent years. To support conservation efforts, 100 Flex Alert boxes containing fans, refrigerator magnets, energy saving tips, brochures and stickers with important messages on conservation, were distributed to the heads of the nonprofit organizations.

To learn more about SCE’s community forums, visit The next community forum is scheduled July 25 in Pico Rivera at El Rancho High School (cafeteria), 6501 Passons Road, near the Pico Rivera City Hall.

Topics: Customer Service, Safety