FARMINGTON — The United Way of the Tri-Valley Area invites volunteers to build interior storm windows to help people stay warm and save money.

Volunteers are invited to attend a window panel workshops from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Mt. Blue Campus Incubator Space on Saturdays, Oct. 4, 11, 18 and 25. No previous experience is required. Follow signs posted at the school or call 778-5048 for specific directions.

The Community Energy Challenge is a Greater Franklin County volunteer-based weatherization initiative in its sixth year.

A simple, low-cost strategy of interior storm window panels keeps heat inside homes during the winter and encourages homeowners to make positive changes in their energy consumption. Homeowners participate in workshops when possible, and become more proactive in their homes and lives.

Those who receive fuel assistance may qualify for up to six free interior storm window panels. Otherwise, panels cost $1.50 per linear foot. The panels will pay for themselves in energy saved in the first heating season.

Interior storm window panels are available to people living in Franklin County, Livermore, Livermore Falls, North New Portland, New Portland, Starks and Vienna.

Application deadline for storm window panels is Oct. 17.

Since the inception of the program in 2009, 405 volunteers have served a total of 8,172 hours building and installing 1,823 interior storm window panels for 274 households and 17 public buildings. The annual estimated energy savings is over $48,000.

Anyone interested in participating may call the United Way of the Tri-Valley Area at 778-5048.

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