Aug 23, 2021

PPL Electric Utilities fosters growth in diverse communities through Empowering Equitable Communities initiative

Empowering Equitable Communities

PPL recognizes the vital part we play in our customer’s lives and serving them is at the heart of all we do. We recognize that our communities are diverse, and our goal is to empower others to celebrate differences and raise understanding. We’re committed to promoting an inclusive culture through volunteerism and partnerships with nonprofit organizations devoted to furthering diverse, inclusive communities.

PPL Electric Utilities, serving customers in 29 counties throughout central and eastern Pennsylvania, is driving action through its Empowering Equitable Communities program. Tailored to the specific needs of the communities they serve, the program fosters diversity, equity and inclusion through a multi-layered approach, including a youth mentor program.

The mentorship program gives fifth grade students the opportunity to learn from eight PPL mentors who were trained by Big Brothers Big Sisters. In monthly one-hour sessions, students and mentors talk about homework, peer relationships, future career ideas, sports, family and anything else that’s on their minds.

Meet Forrest Jordan, support engineer, and Trevor Whaley, distribution technician, two of the PPL Electric Utilities youth mentors in the Susquehanna region of Pennsylvania.

 

Meet Forrest Jordan

A Zoom screen showing an adult male mentor on the right with an adolescent male student wearing a mask on the left.

 

As a baseball coach, helping kids learn and grow is part of Forrest’s DNA. So, when he was presented with the opportunity to become a mentor for Eddie — a student in the Berwick School District — it was a no brainer.

“Eddie has had a rough home life so meeting with him for 30 minutes each week gave him a sense of normalcy,” said Forrest. “We would work through school assignments, play games and talk about what we do for fun on the weekends. It was such an amazing experience.”

For Forrest, seeing Eddie smile and giving him a safe space to talk about whatever was on his mind was such a rewarding experience.

“Sometimes help is just being a listening ear,” he said. “I firmly believe this mentor program will have a big impact on his life.”

 

Meet Trevor Whaley

A smiling Black male wearing a hard hat and yellow safety vest sits on the back of a work truck. Trevor’s passion for giving back to his community inspired him to become a mentor for a student at Curtin Middle School in Williamsport. The pair met every two weeks to talk about a variety of things including sports, schoolwork and personal feelings.

“One of our main topics was about how to be a better student in school,” said Trevor. “It was surprising to learn how much some of his behavior related issues were affected by things that happened outside of the classroom.”

Trevor established a big brother, little brother relationship with his student and focused establishing achievable goals for him to improve.

When asked if he would recommend the mentor program to others, he replied:

“Yes, I feel the same things that kids go through happen in our lives and mentoring is a great way to teach them good life lessons we’ve learned.”