Thursday 30th November 2023 is National Fuel Poverty Awareness Day, reminding us that we are now two years into the energy crisis with 6.3 million households across the UK in fuel poverty, and no obvious end in sight. Following the absence of any energy bill support for households this winter in the Autumn Statement, and the announcement by Ofgem that the typical bill will go up by nearly £100 in January, your support for our Fuel Poverty Awareness Day has never been more needed.
Croydon has an above average 15% of households struggling to pay heating bills during the winter, and this is set to increase oblongside the energy price cap, which as recently announced, will go up again in January 2024. The financial impact speaks for itself.
Typical household annual energy bill
The effects of fuel poverty extend beyond a lack of warmth in homes. For families struggling to make ends meet, the burden of higher energy bills will have dire consequences. A choice between heating and other essentials, such as food and clothing, is the grim reality for an increasing number of Croydon residents.
Certain groups within Croydon are particularly vulnerable to fuel poverty. Low-income families, the elderly, and those with long-term health conditions, face additional challenges in accessing affordable energy and will be more susceptible to the health risks associated with living in cold homes.
Croydon Community Energy is committed to supporting those living in fuel poverty. We have been working diligently towards renewable energy projects within the borough, to generate returns which will fund energy advice sessions, workshops and support for local residents.
Over the past year we have run one standalone free energy advice session in Croydon, in which we gave out free hot drinks, food and light measures such as LED bulbs and room thermometers. We’ve also attended a number of events such as the bi-monthly Sustainable Thornton Heath hub, where we’ve been able to check people are receiving the right support they are entitled to and given them key information about where they can get more help. We are planning a lot more events over the next few crucial months.
We can all play our part in fighting this hidden crisis by educating ourselves and others about fuel poverty and its impact, and by identifying vulnerable individuals or households in our community who might need our support this winter.
Fuel poverty affects the lives and well-being of too many individuals and families in Croydon. By actively participating in initiatives, raising awareness, and advocating for change, we can work towards a community where no one is left in the cold.
This Fuel Poverty Awareness Day can be a reminder not only of a desperate situation, but of the power and compassion of communities, in building a sustainable and equitable future for all.
For the full information, visit our website: https://www.croydoncommunityenergy.co.uk/energy-advice. We also host energy advice sessions, check our website for upcoming events.