Surviving Winter still needs £25,000 to say yes to every heating request
As a new study reveals a third of elderly people are set to ration their energy use this winter, the Surviving Winter campaign reports it needs another £25,000 in donations to say yes to every request.
The campaign, which allows those who receive an unwanted Government fuel or heating allowance to donate it to someone in need, has seen a surge in donations this year and has already reached the £100,000 mark.
However Suffolk Community Foundation, which organises the campaign, says it has seen more people than ever come forward needing the service.
It comes as a new survey reveals the recent falling temperatures has placed a increasing financial stress on the over-65s, with more than two-fifths (43%) worried the cold weather will lead to rising fuel bills.
The study, from ComparetheMarket.com, which surveyed 2,000 people over 65, showed that more than a third (38%) were preparing to ration their energy use through the winter months and more than one in ten (11%) feel they are not in the position to afford an increase in their winter bills.
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The research also found that the average energy bill has risen by more than £240 in 2017, an increase of 14% on the year before.
More than 700 older people lose their lives in Suffolk during the winter months due to the cold weather and poor living conditions, the campaign said.
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For every death there are seven more hospital admissions due to the cold weather.
Tim Holder, head of public affairs at Suffolk Community Foundation, has put out a plea for further donations to ensure they can provide help to everyone who needs it.
He said: “We put out an emergency request for further donations because demand has been hugely up on previous years.
“I’m so grateful to Suffolk for donating a further £10,000 which means that we have now reached the £100,000 mark.
“However, we still need at least another £25,000 to make sure that we can continue to say yes to every request for help this winter.”
To help the campaign, by either donating your government Winter Fuel Payment or making donation, call 01473 602602, give online at www.suffolkcf.org.uk or make a donation in any branch of Ipswich Building Society.