Northamptonshire Community Foundation has launched an appeal to help isolated and vulnerable older people in the county during the bitter weather spell.
The Surviving Winter appeal has distributed funds directly to individuals and local organisations, granting £5,000 to Care and Repair Northamptonshire and £4,640 to Rushden charity, SERVE to aid elderly people through the winter.
Care and Repair Northamptonshire were awarded funding to run their ‘Warm at Home’ service, which supports older people to continue to live safe, warm and secure within their own homes. The charity offers the elderly support so they can access benefits uptake advice, support them with fuel debt, tariff switching, access to energy company grants and adding to the Priority Services Register.
They offer practical advice too, which includes draught exclusion, repairs to doors and windows, replacement letterboxes, provision of panel heaters, radiator reflector foils and secondary glazing plus the distribution of Keep Warm Bags.
Gillian Shadbolt, service director at Care and Repair Northamptonshire said: “We are so grateful to Northamptonshire Community Foundation for once again enabling us to deliver our ‘Warm at Home’ service to vulnerable older clients across Northamptonshire.
"Through the service we carry out a comprehensive range of home measures to keep people warmer at home this winter, particularly important given the weather this week.
"Older people are particularly susceptible to the effects of the cold which can put their health at risk, so taking positive steps to keeping warmer at home can play a key part in staying well this winter.”
Poor weather conditions have an extreme effect on older people’s mobility, causing isolation for many in the county.
This year, the Surviving Winter appeal also funded an initiative set up by East Northamptonshire charity, SERVE, which aims to bring an end to isolation for older people by providing a volunteer-led transport service.
Jess Slater, general manager of the charity SERVE said: "This funding will have a huge impact on our beneficiaries in East Northants and Wellingborough, the funding will enable us to recruit and train more volunteers in the community to assist with transportation of our beneficiaries so they can access our wellbeing groups on a regular basis.
"Isolation for older people and people with disabilities is a lot to do with being dependent on transport and having access to disability vehicles.
"As a charity, being able to recruit and train the volunteer drivers in the community is vital as they are the ones who will be supporting people travelling to socially engaging wellbeing activities."
Northamptonshire Community Foundation is urging for people to support the most vulnerable in our communities and remind them that they are not forgotten.
If you’d like to support this appeal, visit the foundation’s website to find out more: www.ncf.uk.com/survivingwinter.