Progress Energy and its employees have pledged $3.3 million to be distributed to more than 1,000 charities in the Carolinas and Florida.
The Raleigh-based power company noted that the amount pledged is consistent with amounts donated over the past decade, despite economic booms and busts. This year, Progress employees are donating amid the uncertainty of their own jobs as the company looks to pare hundreds of positions, the consequence of a planned corporate merger with cross-state neighbor Duke Energy in Charlotte.
In Progress's employee pledging program, the company contributes 50 cents for every dollar employees give to charity. Thus in this year's pledged total, $2.2 million will come from employees and $1.1 million from the company. The pledges were made this summer and donations will begin Jan. 1 through payroll deductions.
Employees can select from pre-approved charities or pick their own, as long as they are not churches or schools, Hughes said. Recipients in this area include Alzheimers Association of Eastern N.C., American Cancer Society, United Way, Meals on Wheels, Triangle Radio Reading Service and Urban Ministries.
"I think it’s telling that employees who have this much uncertainty about their own jobs actually pledged $20,000 more this year than last year," said Progress spokesman Mike Hughes. "We know there is an awful lot of need in the communities we serve."