Members of UA Local 412 came to the aid of Albuquerque, N.M. residents who may have trouble preparing their living spaces for the colder months ahead.
The 29th annual event, named H.E.A.T.S ON (Handicapped and Elderly Assistance To Service Our Neighbors), is a partnership between the city of Albuquerque and Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 412.
Local 412 Business Agent Adam Valdez said the main premise of the event is to winterize homes for the cold weather.
“Every year for the past 29 years in Albuquerque, members of Local 412 have volunteered their own time on a Saturday, to go out into the community and help out 100 senior and disabled citizens in Albuquerque,” Valdez said.
The event allows the members to check up on some of the most vulnerable Albuquerqueans, who may not be able to take care of all of their household needs.
“We shut down, drain and cover their evaporative coolers, test existing and install new smoke detectors, replace light bulbs and startup furnaces, while checking safeties and carbon monoxide,” Valdez said. “Most of these people do not have the money or resources to pay to have this done themselves.”
For the past two years, Local 412 has extended the reach of H.E.A.T.S ON to include Santa Fe, N.M. and intends to provide future volunteer services in the area.
“We have recently started doing a separate H.E.A.T.S ON event in Santa Fe each of the past two years,” Valdez said. “We plan to do this in both locations every year for many years to come.”
Between 60 and 70 members volunteered their time in Albuquerque, while the new tradition in Santa Fe drew approximately 20 volunteer members.
Volunteer work is central to Southwest Pipe Trades Association affiliated Local Unions, who believe in giving back to the communities throughout the southwest U.S. where they live and work.