Spread some warmth this winter by donating your Winter Fuel Payment
Somerset Community Foundation (SCF) has launched this year’s Surviving Winter campaign, which encourages people to join the growing number of contributors who donate some or all of their Winter Fuel Payment to help local people living in fuel poverty. This year, any online donations to the campaign made during the week-long Big Give Christmas Challenge - midday Tuesday 27 November to midday Tuesday 4 December - will be doubled!
Click here for more information and remember: all donations will help the Surviving Winter campaign, but donations that are made online between midday Tuesday 27 November and midday Tuesday 4 December will be matched, meaning they will be worth twice as much.
Last year, over 500 older people living in fuel poverty in Somerset were helped to keep warm and better connected through the winter months, thanks to pensioners and other local donors who gave to Surviving Winter.
A Surviving Winter grant doesn’t just go towards paying the heating bill. It is also the first step towards connecting the recipient to a local Surviving Winter delivery partner; this can become the foundation for a new relationship that can help to overcome the isolation and loneliness many older people experience.
Last winter a single older lady, who already experienced mental health problems and severe anxiety, found a recent diagnosis of fibromyalgia almost too much to bear. The condition had a rapid effect on her mobility and ability to work and before long she found herself in debt. She became extremely depressed and isolated, spending most of her time fully dressed and in bed. It was the only way to keep warm as she could no longer afford to buy fuel for her open fire.
One of SCF’s Surviving Winter delivery partners visited her at home. They filled in a Surviving Winter application form and organised a delivery of subsidised firewood to her house. With fuel to heat her home, she felt able to invite people in without feeling ashamed that her house was cold, and she didn't have to go to bed to keep warm. Her Surviving Winter grant helped alleviate the loneliness she was experiencing and made paying the bills easier. This would not have happened if Surviving Winter did not exist.
Help Somerset Community Foundation to help more isolated and vulnerable older people this year.
To donate to Surviving Winter, visit this page or call 01749 344949. Please remember that if you are able to donate online between midday Tuesday 27 November and midday Tuesday 4 December your donation will be doubled.