The appeal is run by the charity each year and helps older people stay warm and healthy throughout the colder months. It’s critical to their work helping vulnerable older people in Cumbria and has proven to be highly effective in helping those who struggle to heat their homes, to stay warm and healthy during the winter.
The beneficiaries are individuals aged 60 or over, and who receive a state pension and/or pension credit or struggle to maintain a basic acceptable standard of living during the winter due to the cost of heating their home and the restrictions of cold weather.
As a result of this funding during winter 22/23 Age UK West Cumbria have awarded winter warmth fund grants 203 households, benefitting a total of 260 people in the Allerdale eligible area. The grants have been used to cover essential heating costs and have helped people to stay warm and well.
“I have struggled with my bills since my husband passed away. This has been a life saver for me and I am very grateful.”
“Helping me with my heating cost helped me to buy more food, it was one or the other before Age UK helped me.”
In addition to providing the winter warmth grant Age UK West Cumbria will provide advice to applicants on switching energy suppliers, claiming appropriate benefits/discounts and support isolated people through, for example, befriending schemes.
“Without the help from my fuel payment, I don’t know what I would have done and then to go and get the Attendance Allowance this has changed the rest of my life I have left it was a god send to me. It also put my family’s mind at rest that I was receiving the care I need.”
“We very much welcome this funding from the GDF Programme which will go directly towards helping elderly people in Allerdale turn on their heating during the coldest weather.”
“Every year many vulnerable Cumbrians have to choose between heating and eating. But this winter could see many more in serious difficulty because of the huge rises in the cost of energy happening at the same time as spiralling food costs. It is a perfect storm of difficulty facing older Cumbrians with limited means and this support from the Allerdale GDF Community Partnership will really benefit older people in our community at this particularly difficult time.”
– Andy Beeforth, Chief Executive, Cumbria Community Foundation