The Surviving Winter appeal urgently needs your help

November 26, 2015

Households across Somerset are donating their Winter Fuel Payments to our Surviving Winter appeal; to help those in their communities who desperately need to stay warm this winter.  Donations have begun to pour in after an outstanding response to the launch but after a weekend of arctic temperatures in the south west, more help is needed!

As the sustained cold weather of winter kicks in, GP surgeries and hospitals in Somerset will come under increased pressure. We often hear about the excess winter deaths caused by cold temperatures in winter, but what about the hidden burden the effect of the winter weather on the elderly has on the NHS? Respiratory infections can increase by 19% for every 1 degree Celsius drop in mean temperature below 5 degrees, leading to more doctors’ visits and travel for those who are already struggling to cope.

Simply helping the elderly residents in our county keep warm will make a difference to their health, and therefore help ease some of the pressure on our health infrastructure. This is why this year’s Surviving Winter campaign is so important.  A grant that helps a person suffering from fuel poverty to heat their home will lower the risk of them becoming ill. Helping those who are struggling to cope to eat well and worry less will enable the elderly of Somerset to look forward to Christmas with dignity.

A recipient of a grant from last year’s campaign shares why the help was so important to them, and how difficult the winter before had been: “I will use the grant to keep myself warm this winter. My cottage is very old and does not have central heating. Jumpers can only do so much, last year I really suffered and had to rely on others to take me to the doctors most weeks. It took me a long time to get well.”

We need your help to ensure that as winter bites here in the south west they are well-placed to help those in need. Don’t let Somerset’s elderly population get left in the cold to suffer.


To recycle your winter fuel payment please click here. Thank you.

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