Surviving Winter on track to help over 500 vulnerable people this winter

March 5, 2019

Somerset Community Foundation (SCF) is delighted to announce that the 2018/19 Surviving Winter campaign has been a phenomenal success. The appeal is well on its way to reaching this winter’s target of helping over 500 vulnerable older people in Somerset.

Thanks to the inspiration of one Somerset pensioner, hundreds of older people in our communities can look forward to a warmer and more sociable winter each year. Since Surviving Winter first launched in 2010, the appeal has raised an astounding £700,000 for Somerset, helping thousands of people. One man’s simple idea to donate the equivalent of his Winter Fuel Payment to help others in greater need has since grown to become a successful nationwide campaign.

Surviving Winter’s delivery partners actively support people living in fuel poverty by visiting their homes and issuing grants. Thanks to the generosity of donors this winter, the Somerset campaign has already issued over £50,000 in grants, helping over 350 people across the county [as at 04/03/2019]. More grants will continue to be issued well into the chilly springtime.

Barbara Moore is 72 and lives in Kingsbury Episcopi. She has recently received a Surviving Winter grant for £150: “ My husband Eric is currently in hospital, having undergone back surgery. This cash boost will help keep us warm for the rest of the winter, and I can’t wait for him to come back to our lovely warm bungalow.”

The grant was delivered by one of Somerset Community Foundation’s Surviving Winter delivery partners, LiveWest.

Barbara went on to say: “We are so grateful for this grant and can’t thank LiveWest enough for guiding us through the application process. It has encouraged us to put the heating on more and keep ourselves warm. In the past we would not have the heating on so high or as often and we would sometimes feel cold.

“Now we feel warm and comfortable in our own home and it is thanks to this Surviving Winter money.”

Community Council for Somerset (CCS), one of SCF’s delivery partners, advise people not to suffer in a cold home in silence. Cold weather is a prime cause of preventable deaths among older, isolated people in rural areas like Somerset. If you or someone you know is in need, please contact your Village Agent via CCS. They can help with accessing Surviving Winter grants, and can provide support and advice on how to save money by changing your energy tariff or supplier, or ways to make your home more energy efficient.

For information on how to apply for a Surviving Winter grant, please contact either Community Council for Somerset on 01823 331222 or Age UK Somerset on 01823 345610 or click here.


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