FRIDAY 23 February marks Fuel Poverty Awareness Day, when organisations across the country, including Cambridge City Council, will be raising awareness of the problems faced by those struggling to keep warm in their homes, and highlighting initiatives that are in place to tackle the issue.
Around 4 million UK households are in fuel poverty and are unable to afford to live in a warm, dry home. This issue also affects Cambridge residents, with the latest Government figures stating that over 5,000 residents here are in fuel poverty.
However there is support available in Cambridge to help local residents. Winter Warmth is a free energy advice service being offered to residents through a partnership between the council and the environmental charity PECT.
Residents can book to receive a free home energy advice visit from an impartial and friendly advisor – and to gain a free goodie bag. Winter Warmth provides households with the information and resources needed to stay warm and healthy, while cutting costs and carbon.
A drop-in session is also being held at the Arbury Community Centre, Campkin Road, on Wednesday 28 February between 10am and 12 noon. No appointment is necessary so residents who could benefit from some advice can simply call in to talk to the team.
Winter Warmth aims to offer help and advice on behavioural changes, choosing the best energy tariff and supplier, managing water bills, and assisting people to access information on the national £140 Warm Home Discount and other funding opportunities.
Cllr Richard Johnson, Executive Councillor for Communities said: “Fuel Poverty can be a major issue with many people unable to afford to heat their homes effectively.
“As part of the council’s Anti-poverty Strategy we are able to fund initiatives like Winter Warmth that can assist residents to maximise their income and have the opportunity of a warmer home environment.
“This service is vital, because NHS advice suggests that when the weather drops below 8C, some people are at increased risk of physical or mental health conditions such as heart attack, stroke, pneumonia and depression.”
- Fuel Poverty Awareness Day is a campaign led by National Energy Action with the aim of highlighting the problems faced by those struggling to keep warm in their homes and the excellent work being undertaken to tackle the issue. For more information visit http://www.nea.org.uk/campaigns-policy/fuel-poverty-awareness-day/