Project ElderCool takes on the summer heat with a sustainable solution to heat-related deaths

EllieAna Hale
Editorial Assistant


Summer is here and with that comes excruciating heat and air conditioning systems on blast. But what happens to those who are vulnerable to the heat and without the cold air that everyone needs in the summer?


Beginning in the summer of 2000, after the occurrence of 21 heat-related deaths in Kansas City, Project ElderCool, has taken on the issue of heat-related deaths among senior citizens and those with respiratory disabilities. The program, under the Bishop Sullivan Center located on 6435 E. Truman Rd., created a sustainable project that allows eligible seniors access to air conditioning units and is working to install them in homes.


“Project EdlerCool has been providing air condition window units to low-income seniors,” said Shiloh Foster, Bishop Sullivan Center Household Assistance Manager. “We are over 5,500 installations that have been done since the program started.”


Heat-related deaths among seniors are a rising issue in the Kansas City area due to the high temperatures and the lack of access to proper air conditioning units for low-income community members.


“It first started when we identified a need,” Foster said. “There had been several heat-related deaths in the news, so we came up with a solution to help. That first year we put up 400 air conditioners. Since then, the average ranged from 120 to 150 installed each year.”


Project EdlerCool is taking this issue and transforming a solution that involves providing free air conditioning systems, installing air conditioning window units in low-income households with no existing air conditioning, and creating a credit line for the electric bill increase from the usage of the systems.


“It’s very rewarding and fills my heart with joy knowing that we are able to help and make their lives a little less stressful and a little cooler for them over the summer,” Mckinzie Horsley, intern and senior at St. Marys College, said. “As the receptionist, I haAlthough I don’t get the chance to meet them in person, it is a very rewarding experience and humbling in the fact that I am helping in some small way.”


The following eligibility for the ElderCool program includes the information below according to the Bishop Sullivan website:
To be eligible, seniors must:


•Be 65 years or older
•Have no air conditioner in the home
•Live under 185% of the poverty guidelines
•Have not received an air conditioner from Bishop Sullivan Center within the past three years


To be eligible, those with a respiratory disability must:

•Receive disability due to a respiratory condition or have a disabling condition that is made worse by respiratory issues
•Have no air conditioner in the home
•Live under 185% of the poverty guidelines
•Have not received an air conditioner from Bishop Sullivan Center within the past three years


Those eligible can call (816) 231-0984 to apply over the phone.
Additionally, the Bishop Sullivan Center is accepting donations that will go toward the cost of the air conditioners, the installation and the establishment of credit systems.


“The biggest thing that the community can do is donate to the program,” Foster said. “We do pay for the cost of the air conditioners which has gone up this year, and then also because having an air conditioner run in the house causes the electric bill to go up, we also provide a credit for the electric account for the seniors that qualify.”


This influential program plans to keep aspiring for establishing community action in the fight against heat-related deaths.


“It literally saves lives and it has been for the last twenty years,” Foster said.

Want Northeast News articles sent straight to your inbox each week? Subscribe below!
Enter your email address and click on the Get Instant Access button.
We respect your privacy

Comments are closed.

  • One dead in double shooting at Indep/Maple Blvds

    August 13th, 2022
    by

    Kansas City MO police are reporting a double shooting that left one person dead at the BP station at Independence […]


    KCPS Hosts Summerfest Event

    August 12th, 2022
    by

    For the second year, Kansas City Public Schools and the KCPS Education Foundation are partnering with area public health providers […]


    An Artistic Day at 12th & Benton

    August 11th, 2022
    by

    It was all hands on deck today at the 12th & Benton intersection traffic calming project. Artists, students and project […]


    KC “movie cars” on display in Branson

    August 10th, 2022
    by

    Dorri Partain Contributor Who ya gonna call, when you need to go back in time? Joe Pace, that’s who. Pace, […]


    Missouri Bicentennial Quilt takes its last stop at the SHSMO Kansas City Research Center

    August 10th, 2022
    by

    EllieAna Hale Editorial Assistant The Missouri Bicentennial Quilt has been a part of Kansas City’s deep history and celebrates KC […]


    Some voters confused by changes to polling locations, district boundaries

    August 10th, 2022
    by

    Bryan Stalder Contributor Tuesday, August 2 was the Missouri Primary Election. Voters were asked to select a ballot for the […]


    New Ambassador Wellness Program aims to inform Kansas City about health

    August 10th, 2022
    by

    Aniaya Reed Editorial Assistant This past June, the Kansas City Health Department started the Ambassador Wellness Program to assist residents […]


    Show Me KC Schools, Samuel U. Rodgers Host Second Bounce Back to School Event

    August 6th, 2022
    by

    Back for its second year, Show Me KC Schools and Samuel U. Rodgers will host the Bounce Back to School […]


  • Kansas City’s Most Wanted

    August 3rd, 2022
    by

    KC Crime Stoppers has partnered with The Kansas City’s Northeast News to help track local KC individuals on the Kansas […]


    LEC advocates for more Latinx educators

    August 3rd, 2022
    by

    By Aniaya Reed Edgar Palacios, President/CEO founded LEC (Latinx Education Collaborative) in 2018. His goal for his non-profit organization is […]


    Knowledge is Power Program moves forward

    August 3rd, 2022
    by

    By Aniaya Reed KIPP: Endeavor Academy, a tuition-free, open-enrollment public school, opened its doors in Kansas City in 2007 as […]


    Janet Raymer named 2021-2022 Frontier School District Teacher of the Year

    August 3rd, 2022
    by

    By EllieAna Hale This 2021-2022 Frontier School District Teacher of the Year award was granted to Janet Raymer, a seventh-grade […]


    Frontier receives $250,000 Kauffman grant

    August 3rd, 2022
    by

    By Aniaya Reed The Frontier School of Innovation, through the New Frontier Educational Foundation, will benefit from the Kauffman Foundation’s […]


    Gordon Parks Elementary School strives to elevate student success

    August 3rd, 2022
    by

    By EllieAna Hale Being one of the first charter schools in the Kansas City, Mo., area, Gordon Parks Elementary School […]


    Headstart Home-Based open opportunities for all parents

    August 3rd, 2022
    by

    By EllieAna Hale The Family Conservancy (TFC) has continually created sustainable education, and resource programs to provide equitable opportunities for […]


    Burned mobile home mess abated by county

    August 3rd, 2022
    by

    A little over a day after the charred remains of an abandoned mobilehome moved from the old Heart Village Mobile […]


    Holy Cross Catholic School to break ground on new Community Center in 2022

    August 3rd, 2022
    by

    By EllieAna Hale Holy Cross School on Quincy Avenue plans to break ground this summer on the construction of a […]


    2022 Back To School issue

    August 3rd, 2022
    by

    Want Northeast News articles sent straight to your inbox each week? Subscribe below! Enter your email address and click on […]


    Election results of note from the August 2nd Primary Election

    August 3rd, 2022
    by

    The results are in from yesterday’s Primary election and the resultspromise some highly contested battles shaping up for the November […]


    Chamber business ambassador makes long awaited trip home to Africa

    August 3rd, 2022
    by

    By Abby Hoover In life, there are challenges and there is progress. For Rol Deng Diing, Ambassador of Business Communications […]


  • Faces Of Northeast


  • Remember This?

    Remember This?

    August 10th, 2022
    by

  • Want articles sent directly to your inbox each week? Subscribe below!
    We respect your privacy and will not distribute your information.