Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) Distribution and the Centre for Sustainable Energy (CSE) have teamed up to tackle fuel poverty across central southern England.
They have launched the SSEN Energy Advisor Programme, which will run until March 2022, to help people stay warm and spend less and provide organisations with support to tackle the issue.
The organisations are calling on health, welfare and other professionals to refer people to the new support service, which will provide in-depth and tailored advice to households across central southern England.
The Programme will offer assistance in accessing funding for energy efficiency measures and energy improvements as well as help identify the causes of high energy bills and provide advice on switching energy suppliers.
In addition, it will offer personalised advice on keeping warm and comfortable at home for less, including benefits entitlement, Warm Home Discount applications and managing energy debt, alongside assistance in resolving issues with damp, mould and condensation in homes.
The initiative has been set up to support more than 800 households through one-off phone conversations and in-depth casework and is exploring the possibility of home visits when the coronavirus restrictions have eased.
CSE Project Manager Cora Paine said: “Cold homes cause misery, ill-health and social exclusion but often people don’t know where to turn for support. Our new service will support people; those who are interested in funding for insulation or heating systems, struggling with energy bills, living in a home that is cold, damp or draughty, unsure about how to best use heating systems or find it confusing.
“CSE has been working to support SSEN’s vulnerable customers for a number of years, including signing customers up to their Priority Services Register and we’re excited to continue developing this service.”