NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) – Rising energy costs are making it harder for Connecticut residents to heat and power their homes. Leaders in New Haven are showing solidarity to help you save.

Whether you’re behind on your bills or contemplating a payment plan, New Haven city leaders are promoting ways for residents to cut costs. Connecticut residents can get short and long-term assistance through a number of financial and energy efficiency programs.

Stephanie Bowers has sandbags near her cellar because she says her home’s foundation is crumbling.

“I have to dump the water for my furnace to work,” Bowers said.

There’s mold and plants growing inside, and air is seeping through the cracks.

“I have breathing issues, I have long-COVID issues, so that’s a danger within itself,” Bowers said.

Bowers lives alone and is struggling to pay her utility bill, which is more than $1,300.

“I need a new driveway to fix the issues of the water and the air coming in my home and the mold issues. I don’t have the money to do that,” Bowers said.

So, she’s starting to get help through the I Heart My Home Program, which serves hundreds of customers across Connecticut to improve their home and lower their bills. Bowers says they’ve already sealed her windows and helped her find a better utility rate.

“The help that they’re giving me from the start is amazing,” Bowers said.

Leaders from I Heart My Home joined community partners and New Haven city leaders to promote the assistance, whether it’s through payment programs, energy-efficient resources, or choosing an alternative energy supplier.

“Do not leave money on the table,” said New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker. “I know folks are really busy, but if you spend a few minutes reaching out to the folks here today accessing this information, you will save a lot of money in the future.”

Bowers says she expects to see savings in her next bill, lifting a major burden.

If you’re struggling and need help, you can call New Haven Community Action Agency (203) 387-7700 at about your heating bills and Operation Fuel for all other utilities.