Doing more for our customers also means investing in our local communities. Our support comes in many forms, including employee volunteerism, economic development, charitable contributions, and infrastructure investment, to name a few. Our long-standing relationship between our employees, our companies and the local community is part of the culture we embrace.
Investing in Community Infrastructure
Our most tangible community presence is the infrastructure that our customers rely on for safe, reliable energy delivery. We are committed to maintaining and modernizing our systems for today’s and future generations.
Fueling Economic Development
We also are active in a wide range of local and regional economic development organizations across our service area, investing more than $1 million annually. In Indiana alone, this investment results in commitments from about 100 companies to invest and create about 10,000 jobs every 10 years, generating thousands of construction jobs in the process.
Supporting Local Communities
In 2011, NiSource and our team members provided more than $5.5 million in donations to local, regional and national non-profit organizations. These contributions spanned our service area and engaged hundreds of employees and community stakeholders.
NiSource has established the NiSource Charitable Foundation, with a mission to help create strong and sustainable communities where our employees and customers live and work.
Providing Energy Assistance
The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) was created by Congress to help low-income households. This critical program provides federal funding to help natural gas customers who struggle with home energy bills, especially during times of extreme weather.
Increasing Supplier Diversity
Our supplier diversity program strengthens and widens the playing field for qualified suppliers. It helps us harness innovative ideas and processes, gain a competitive advantage and assist in building community infrastructure through employment and training.
Emergency Preparedness & Public Awareness
Relationship building and communication with our first responders is a priority at NiSource to ensure the safety of our communities. Through face-to-face meetings, emergency preparedness drills and tabletop exercises conducted throughout the year, we work to maintain open lines of communication with our safety partners across our system.
Collaborative Approach to Outreach
Across NiSource, one of our core principles is to engage in early, frequent and ongoing collaboration with our stakeholders--the individuals and organizations involved in our initiatives and who are part of the communities we serve.