As Summer Temperatures Arrive, Cool for Wake Offers Some Relief

With temperatures expected in the 90s today, many will be turning the thermostat down to stay cool. But for some in our community, it’s simply not that easy to beat the heat.

Residents can help their neighbors stay cool during the summer heat by donating to our Cool for Wake program. Through a partnership with the Raleigh Regional Association of REALTORS Giving Network, the program provides fans and air conditioners to qualifying households, making the summer season a little easier to bear.

“Last summer saw more than 3,100 heat-related visits to the emergency room across our state,” said Wake County Commissioner Dr. James West. “Fans and air conditioning units can be a lifesaving resource in the midst of hot summer days and heatwaves, but we can’t provide these without generous donations from the community.”

Every year, around 100 fans and 25 AC units are delivered through this program, which started back in 1991. The need is expected to be greater this year as many may still be feeling the financial impacts of the pandemic.

Cool for Wake runs from mid-May to mid-September but has the greatest need for donations in early summer to ensure that households who need a fan or AC unit can receive one before the hottest months arrive.

Donating to Cool for Wake
The easiest way to help neighbors through the Cool for Wake program is to make a financial donation online. All funds received go directly to families in need, as program administrative costs are funded through the Wake County budget.

The program also welcomes donations of new or gently used fans and air conditioners.

Applying for Cool for Wake
Households eligible for Cool for Wake can request a fan or AC unit through their social worker or reach out to Denise Kissel at 919-212-7083 or

To qualify for the program applicants must:

  • Meet income requirements;
  • Have at least one person over age 60 or 12 and under within the household; and
  • Not have another source of cooling for the home.

Additionally, households that meet the criteria and have at least one person with a documented history of a chronic respiratory illness may qualify for a window air-conditioning unit.

Learn more about Cool for Wake at

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