Nicor Gas says it will award up to $25,000 to the YWCA in Evanston and the YMCA in Oak Park depending on how many residents of each town participate in its energy efficiency program.

The community challenge, designed to foster energy efficiency awareness and action, runs through April 30. Each homeowner or business that participates in select Nicor Gas Energy Efficiency Programs earns $50 toward their community’s final prize.

Improving the energy efficiency of homes and businesses means less energy is required to maintain a comfortable environment – and reducing energy consumption can help save money.

The program “provides homeowners and businesses across Illinois with the opportunity to save energy and money,” said Beth Reese, president of Nicor Gas.

The non-profit winners will work with Nicor apply the funds toward efficiency projects and improvements at their facility.

“We could not be more grateful to our supporters in the Evanston community,” said Karen Singer, president and CEO of the YWCA Evanston/North Shore.

She said the program will help the YWCA save money on much-needed upgrades as well as help participants reduce their own energy consumption.

“We urge our community to enroll in the Nicor Gas Energy Efficiency Programs. In doing so, we all benefit – Evanston residents and businesses can reduce energy consumption and may recognize energy savings; and the YWCA benefits because with each enrollment, the size of our retrofit grows, enabling the YWCA to become a more energy-efficient, ‘greener’ organization, saving us thousands of dollars in much-needed upgrades and, most importantly, freeing up funds that we can use to better serve our community.”

More information about the program is available online.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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