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Liverpool Residents Secure £700k of Additional Benefits

12/04/2011

A LIVERPOOL based project has helped local residents secure almost £700,000 of additional benefits they were entitled to over the past year.

Health Energy Advice Team (HEAT) was provided with £87,000 of funding over three years from the ScottishPower Energy People Trust to help alleviate fuel poverty. Since April 2010 the registered charity has already helped 1,983 people and employed a full time advisor to work with its team of volunteers across the Winter Survival Project 

In addition to clients securing £698,952 of additional benefits, there have been further positive benefits from the project. Local residents have been helped to access a range of advice, information, services and provision that improves home energy efficiency and increases the amount of vulnerable people accessing fuel poverty initiatives.

All those accessing the project have also been assisted to utilise fuel poverty and energy efficiency measures. 

Key successes of the project include:

  • Over 400 people are now enjoying reduced fuel bills as a result of the assistance to move to social tariffs and help to change utility providers offering more competitive prices.

  • 639 clients advised and/or helped to apply for national Warm Front Grant and local City Council Grants for insulation, making their homes warmer and more energy efficient.

  • 320 people were helped to claim their rightful entitlement to a range of welfare benefits including; Working Tax Credits, Housing Benefit, CTB, Pension Credit.  Income maximisation for the twelve months to March 26th 2011 stands at £698,952. For each client/family helped there was an average annual income increase of £2,184.

Ann Loughrey, ScottishPower’s Head of Corporate Social Responsibility and The ScottishPower Energy People Trust’s Company Secretary, said:

“Funding provided by the ScottishPower Energy People Trust to HEAT has made an enormous difference to almost 2,000 people and we are delighted to have been able to play our part in helping them.

“This is a highly positive initiative which ensures as many vulnerable groups as possible can access the information and assistance they need to make their homes more warm and energy efficient.  We are pleased that HEAT is working to reduce the number of people affected fuel poverty by ensuring access to the provision and wider services they need to stay warm and well.”

Paula Nolan, Centre Manager at HEAT, said:

“We’d like to thank ScottishPower Energy People Trust for its donation to HEAT.  Funding has made a huge difference to people in Liverpool and enabled hundreds to lift themselves out of fuel poverty and keep warm throughout the recent harsh winter.

“HEAT has extensive knowledge of working in the fuel poverty and energy efficiency arena assisting vulnerable groups for over ten years.  We have found a targeted, one point of contact model for fuel poverty and energy efficiency advice and assistance works well and we will continue to help our clients on that basis.  This approach improves take up of grants for energy efficiency measures and fuel poverty initiatives and will enable us to help even more people in the coming year.”
 
The Winter Survival Project takes referrals from all advice agencies in Liverpool as well as self referrals and referrals from other agencies including, police, community wardens and DWP. 

People are able to get to get advice on a face to face basis at the drop in facility at the HEAT offices in the North of the City and at Gartson Citizens Advice Bureaux in the south of the City.

People can access information, advice and assistance by ringing the HEAT team on 0151 263 2620 or you can email: franvaughn@heatkensington.org.uk

You can also get further information by visiting www.heatkensington.org.uk

For further information on the ScottishPower Energy People Trust, please visit: www.energypeopletrust.com

For more information contact:
Susanne Grant, the BIG Partnership, on 0141 333 9585 / 07824 388 472 susanne.grant@bigpartnership.co.uk

Or

Kay McCarthy, the BIG partnership, on 0141 333 9585 / 07736 774 338
kay.mccarthy@bigpartnership.co.uk

HEAT - Paula Nolan, Manager, Health Energy Advice Team (HEAT), 0151 263 2232 paulanolan@heatkensington.org.uk

Note to Editors:

  • The ScottishPower Energy People Trust was established in November 2005 to fund not-for-profit organisations that help vulnerable people including families, young people, the disabled and the elderly who need to spend more than 10% of their income on energy bills.

  • To date, the ScottishPower Energy People Trust has awarded over £8.2m to 160 projects helping 1,490,571 people in 1,251,939 households across Britain.

  • The ScottishPower Energy People Trust does not provide funding directly to individuals but provides funding to not for profit organisations which represent the vulnerable/fuel poor. People described as living in fuel poverty are those who spend more than 10% of their income on energy bills.

  • There is no time limit in organisations applying for funds as the Trust is a long term registered charity. The decisions on the awards to organisations are made independent of ScottishPower by the Board of Trustees of the charity.

  • To apply for a grant from The ScottishPower Energy People Trust, log onto www.energypeopletrust.com or email SPEnergyPeopleTrust@ScottishPower.com or call 0141 568 3492

  • The ScottishPower Energy People Trust is just one of a number of ScottishPower initiatives which assist some of the UK’s most vulnerable people. As well as working closely with the Citizen’s Advice Bureau, ScottishPower employs Community Liaison Officers who visit people in their homes. The energy supplier has also insulated thousands of homes across the UK through its Energy Efficiency Commitment.

  • In Ofgem’s Review of Suppliers’ Voluntary Initiatives to Help Vulnerable Customers (August 2007), the Trust was recognised for Best Practice as it integrated energy efficiency advice and the provision of EEC measures to help customers manage and reduce future energy expenditure.

HEAT

About us

The Health Energy Advice Team Ltd (HEAT) is a company Limited by guarantee, Company number 4827816 and a registered Charity. Charities Act No 1100705.

HEAT is a Charity that provides a confidential and non-judgemental advice service on an extensive range of provisions that enhance the quality of life of individuals who are socially and economically disadvantaged.

Since the Charity was formed in 2003 a wide range of projects have been developed within our mission to ‘enhance the quality of life of individuals who are socially and economically disadvantaged’ and the charity now employs 13 people who work on 5 different projects.

Objectives

  • to enhance the potential and quality of life for those who are disadvantaged from society by reason of poverty, special needs or other circumstances

  • to preserve and protect good health

  • to relieve poverty, hardship and distress

  • to advance education and provide free advice and assistance on welfare benefits, housing problems, debt and energy efficiency advice

  • to benefit the community

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