The Duke Energy Foundation is powering the vitality of Florida communities by awarding nearly $515,000 in grant funding to support community resiliency.

The projects, hosted by nonprofits, will strengthen communities and advance prosperity by addressing economic and quality of life issues, including diversity and access to the arts. To align with the start of hurricane season, the company also recently partnered with local organizations across the state to assemble and distribute storm preparedness kits to vulnerable customers, who may not have the means to access the materials in other ways.

“Strengthening people and communities is at the heart of each grant’s purpose, and the true value of these grants is greater than the dollar amount,” said Catherine Stempien, Duke Energy Florida president. “Providing access to the arts, inspiring diversity and encouraging hurricane preparedness all create resilient communities and result in lasting positive impacts in our state.”

Recipients of the largest donations include:

Tampa Bay area recipients

  • Pinellas County:
    • Neighborly Care Network and Florida Dream Center: Prepare-a-thon: Storm Kit Distribution to Seniors and Vulnerable Residents ($25,000)
    • Clearwater Jazz Holiday: Leadership and Civility through Jazz After-School Program ($15,000)
    • In Touch with Communities Around the World: Art and Leadership Skills at Tyrone Middle School ($10,000)
    • Holocaust Museum: Speak Up, Speak Now: Combating Bullying in Underserved Communities ($10,000)
    • St. Petersburg Art Alliance: Downtown Art Walk Trolley to Support Arts Access ($10,000)
  • Polk County:
    • Lake Wales Main Street Redevelopment: Connecting Diverse Communities via Streetscapes ($10,000)
  • Highlands County:
    • Nu-Hope Elder Care Services: Prepare-a-thon: Storm Kit Distribution to Seniors ($14,000)

Greater Orlando area recipients

  • Lake, Orange, Osceola and Seminole Counties
    • United Arts of Central Florida: Taking the Arts to Low-Income, Diverse Communities ($50,000)
  • Orange, Osceola, Seminole, Volusia, Marion, Lake, Hernando, Citrus, Polk, Pinellas and Pasco
    • Prospera: Storm Preparedness Training for Small Hispanic Businesses ($25,000)
  • Volusia County:
    • African American Museum of the Arts: Spotlight on African American Artists: Visits to Schools and Museum ($10,000)

North Central Florida area recipients

  • Citrus County:
    • Citrus County Meals on Wheels: Prepare-a-thon: Storm Kit Distribution to Seniors ($14,000)
  • Bay, Franklin, Gulf, Liberty, Wakulla counties:
    • City of Mexico Beach: Beach Restoration: Dune Walkovers, Sea Oat and Native Plant Revegetation ($150,000)
    • Forgotten Coast Cultural Coalition: Hurricane Michael Art Project: Resiliency through the Arts ($20,000)

Victories for Veterans Program
The Victories for Veterans program is also included in these grants. It is a unique partnership with the Tampa Bay Rays through which Duke Energy contributes $1,000 for every Rays regular season win to organizations serving veterans. This is the fourth consecutive year of the partnership; since 2016, the program has funded $259,700, benefiting 33 recipient organizations throughout Duke Energy’s Florida service territory. Grant application submissions for 2019 are open through Aug. 5. Organizations can apply online at Selected organizations will be recognized at a Rays home game this September during pregame festivities with an on-field check presentation by Duke Energy and Rays representatives.

Duke Energy Foundation
The Duke Energy Foundation provides philanthropic support to meet the needs of communities where Duke Energy customers live and work. The foundation contributes more than $30 million annually in charitable gifts, and is funded by Duke Energy shareholder dollars. More information about the foundation and its Powerful Communities program can be found at

Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK), a Fortune 150 company headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., is one of the largest energy holding companies in the U.S. It employs 30,000 people and has an electric generating capacity of 51,000 megawatts through its regulated utilities, and 3,000 megawatts through its nonregulated Duke Energy Renewables unit.

Duke Energy is transforming its customers’ experience, modernizing the energy grid, generating cleaner energy and expanding natural gas infrastructure to create a smarter energy future for the people and communities it serves. The Electric Utilities and Infrastructure unit’s regulated utilities serve approximately 7.7 million retail electric customers in six states – North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky. The Gas Utilities and Infrastructure unit distributes natural gas to more than 1.6 million customers in five states – North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Ohio and Kentucky. The Duke Energy Renewables unit operates wind and solar generation facilities across the U.S., as well as energy storage and microgrid projects.

Duke Energy was named to Fortune’s 2019 “World’s Most Admired Companies” list, and Forbes’ 2019 “America’s Best Employers” list. More information about the company is available at The Duke Energy News Center contains news releases, fact sheets, photos, videos and other materials. Duke Energy’s illumination features stories about people, innovations, community topics and environmental issues. Follow Duke Energy on TwitterLinkedInInstagram and Facebook.

Contact: Peveeta Persaud
Office: 727.820.5592 | 24-Hour: 800.559.3853

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