Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) has awarded $210,435 in grants to 28 nonprofit organizations across four counties in northwest Florida.
- The grants, given through NextEra Energy Foundation, the charitable arm of FPL’s parent company, will fund programs focused on education, food insecurity, senior citizens, child advocacy, and environmental conservation in Walton, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa and Escambia counties.
The money will support the nonprofits’ operations and programs well into 2024, according to J.T. Young, FPL’s vice president and general manager for northwest Florida.
“At FPL, we are honored to support these remarkable nonprofits that lend a hand to lift up those in need,” Young said. “Our commitment to playing an active role in our communities is unwavering as we support the invaluable missions of these important organizations.”
One recipient, Children in Crisis in Fort Walton Beach, will use its grant money to staff and operate its residential-style foster care facility, which includes homes, a food pantry, therapy center and recreation amenities.
- “The FPL Foundation grant helps us to continue to give all of our foster children a safe environment for them to thrive in, including paying utility bills,” said Operations Director Sarah Traver. “Our electricity does so much more than just heat or cool the homes – it is the light that helps our kids learn to read, it is the stove that feeds our kids three healthy meals each day and it is the nightlight in a bedroom that helps a child to sleep. We appreciate FPL more than words can say.”
The local chapter of Sleep in Heavenly Peace in Fort Walton Beach, which builds and provides beds for children in need, also received funding. Chapter President Mickey Hawkins said the money comes at a critical time.
“We currently have 70 bed requests which when filled will exhaust our inventory to zero. So, we will use this grant to sponsor a bed-build and help kids immediately,” Hawkins said.
The foundation awards grants to Northwest Florida nonprofits quarterly. This latest round announced in December brings the total awards to the region over the past year to more than $200,000.
Okaloosa/Walton Counties recipients:
- Emerald Coast Fitness Foundation – Rip Current survival simulator
- Healing Hoof Steps Corporation – Expanding Access to Alternative Mental Health Services
- Children in Crisis – The Children’s Neighborhood
- Sleep in Heavenly Peace – Beds and bedding for children and teens
- Okaloosa Public School Foundation — teacher grant
- Walton County Public School Foundation — teacher grant
- Alaqua Animal Refuge — teacher grant
Santa Rosa County
- Navarre Beach Sea Turtle Conservation Center conservation exhibit expansion
- Panhandle Butterfly House & Nature Center wetland ecosystem curriculum
- Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge – wildlife rehabilitation
- Santa Rosa Education Foundation
- American Red Cross of NWFL Home Fire Campaign
- The Secret Place Home Survivor Services for Children of Commercial Sexual Exploitation
- James B. Washington Education & Sports Academic Tutorial Program
- Pensacola Beach Elementary School PTA – STEM program support
- Naval Aviation Museum Foundation Homeschool Academy
- Ready Set Kids Escambia County
- Dixon School of Arts & Sciences
- Valerie’s House In-School Grief Counseling
- Emmaus Road Outreach Ministries Kidz Program
- Capstone Adaptive Learning Center 2024 Summer Camp
- IHMC Science Saturday’s youth program
- Ronald McDonald House Kitchen expansion
- Waterfront Rescue Mission Homeless to Home stabilizing program
- Escambia County Public School Foundation
- Wildlife Sanctuary of NWFL
- Florida State Parks — Big Lagoon State Park electric tram for visitors accessibly
- Air & Water Management Coastal Plains chapter — scholarships to develop next generation of environmental professionals