Dying in the Summer Heat: Rosa’s Story

Rosa Photo for FB

Anyone who has stepped foot in the great state of Arizona knows that temperatures can climb as high as 118 degrees during the ferocious summer months. The sweltering summer days are long and merciless, leaving Arizonans scurrying to the relief of air conditioning units. Most seniors opt to simply stay home to avoid the blistering heat.

What if that relief was not available? This was the case for 64-year-old, Rosa. Last summer, Rosa, who is living on a fixed income and caring for her niece who is developmentally disabled, lived a heart-breaking experience. Her air conditioner went out right at the start of the summer. On a fixed income, Rosa could not entertain replacing the old unit, so she trusted a repairman to patch it together. This fix was temporary. The very next month, the unit was on the fritz once again. Without air conditioning and out of another hefty service fee, she had yet another company try to fix the aging and worn unit. This vicious cycle repeated itself numerous times throughout the early summer months. Until eventually, the diagnosis was dire…finite. The unit was not repairable.

At the most critical point in the summer, with temperatures soaring at record highs, Rosa had no air conditioning in her home. To replace the unit would cost thousands of dollars. This was simply not an option for her. Rosa and her niece were forced to go without cool air in the heart of summer. She did not want to burden her family and friends, so she suffered in silence. It wasn’t until her daughter found out about the living conditions that hope began to come into view. They tried several city, county, and state programs, looking for help but continuously hit brick walls. Rosa couldn’t qualify for any of the programs they found!

Until…they found Laura at FSL.

“Laura was a blessing,” Rosa said. “She was pleasant…she cared about me.”

It was a crippling 90 degrees inside of Rosa’s house the day FSL arrived. The team whirled into action, providing Rosa with a portable temporary air conditioner while permanent arrangements were being made. In a short time, a brand-new unit was installed, and Rosa was able to breath a sigh of relief.

She was beyond grateful. “God, thank you, thank you!” she cried.

It is only through the generosity of those like you that stories like Rosa’s can be told. FSL strives to help those in need and with your help, we can help many, many more.  Please consider making a donation to FSL today!  Your donation qualifies for the Arizona Charitable Tax Credit (QCO: 20199), providing a dollar-for-dollar credit on your state taxes; up to $400 for single filers and $800 for joint filers.

FSL’s Healthy Homes Air Conditioning Program, is a pilot program created with our partners APS, Phoenix IDA, Phoenix CDIC and SRP.  Learn more about FSL’s Healthy Homes Air Conditioning Repair and Replacement program here: https://www.fsl.org/assistance/

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