Surviving Winter appeal launched by Cambridgeshire Community Foundation
A 79-year-old Cambridgeshire woman forced to sit in her old car rather than turn on her home heating has received financial help with her fuel bills from a county charity.
And now the Cambridgeshire Community Foundation is appealing for cash donations to enable them to help more elderly people facing fuel poverty, by launching their Surviving Winter 2012 appeal.
Emily Bradfield from the Foundation said: “Winter is a dangerous time for Cambridgeshire’s older people. Fuel poverty causes serious health problems including heart attacks and strokes.
“Last year we helped about 150 elderly people in Cambridgeshire through our Surviving Winter campaign. Thanks to the generosity of local people who donated to the Cambridgeshire Winter Fuel Fund in 2011, we were able to provide much needed support to charitable projects working for the elderly and vulnerable throughout the winter months.”
The pensioner who used to sit in her car at Cheveley said: “It will be nice to be able to have the heating on when I need it, rather than wait until I am really cold.”
And a 76-year-old woman from Wicken who also got help with her fuel bills, thanked the Foundation, and the Wicken Swallowtails organisation that highlighted her plight.
The Joint Strategic Needs Assessment for Cambridgeshire says there is an estimated 35,000 households in Cambridgeshire in fuel poverty. Last winter brought an estimated 2,500 “excess” deaths in the East of England, with 10% of those being in Cambridgeshire.
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Emily added: “Fuel poverty can affect anyone, but is often most prevalent among vulnerable people such as pensioners.
“If you are not fuel-poor, please think about donating to Surviving Winter, and if you receive a winter fuel payment, please consider donating all or some of it. Any donation, large or small, could help an older person to survive this winter. Any money you donate will be spent locally.”
The Foundation also supports charitable projects working for the elderly and vulnerable through the winter. Last year, 200 grants were awarded to a variety of grass-roots charities and community groups.
For enquiries about Surviving Winter or making a donation please contact Emily Bradfield on 01223 410535 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Donations can be made on line at www.localgiving.com/cambscf