Community Energy Plus News

Pioneering films produces to raise awareness of fuel poverty

A Cornwall based charity is helping to increase Fuel Poverty awareness among a global audience of frontline care workers and community volunteers by producing a series of short training films which are thought to be the first of their kind.

Working with Cornwall Council, Community Energy Plus – Cornwall’s leading charity delivering local solutions to fuel poverty, energy efficiency and renewable energy, has taken the pioneering approach to create three five minute films to help community workers spot the signs of fuel poverty.  The films provide pointers to help prevent heat escaping and also provide top tips on how to save energy and crucially money in the home.

Cornwall has the highest rate of fuel poverty in the South West, with almost one in five households spending more than 10 per cent of their income on heating their homes.

Care professionals and community volunteers are in a unique position to identify households that are in, or may be at risk of, fuel poverty and for the past decade Community Energy Plus has provided training to raise awareness of fuel poverty and highlight the support available locally.  The films have been produced to supplement ongoing training delivered by Community Energy Plus and through YouTube will be available to an audience far beyond their initial target audience in Cornwall.

Community Energy Plus’s Fuel Poverty Projects Manager Alec Rice explained why the charity had produced the films: “Living in a home that is adequately heated is important for comfort but vital for staying healthy, particularly for older people, children and those living with long term illnesses and disability and we’re committed to promoting that message and raising awareness of the realities of fuel poverty in Cornwall to those that have the potential to make a difference.

“The films really get back to basics and don’t use lots of  jargon and statistics – they simply present the information in a straightforward and accessible way to help front line workers to take steps to help the people they support to live warmer and healthier lives.”

Fitting cavity wall and loft insulation is an easy way to keep the heat in and the cold out, as well as bringing energy bills down and forms a key message of the fuel poverty awareness training films.  Over the past decade Community Energy Plus has helped over 21,000 people in Cornwall to make their homes warmer through their Home Health insulation schemes which are currently funded by Cornwall Council and national energy companies. 

For information on accessing free or discounted loft and cavity wall insulation contact Community Energy Plus on 0800 954 1956.  Community Energy Plus is one of four organisations in the South West that manage the Energy Saving Trust advice centre in the region.  For general energy efficiency advice contact the Cornwall office of Energy Saving Trust on 0800 512012.   For further information on Fuel Poverty awareness training visit www.cep.org.uk