Renfrewshire Council

LEAP providing free energy advice this winter

Local Energy Action Plan (LEAP) has launched an initiative with the help of Renfrewshire Council's Tackling Poverty Programme to help families struggling with their fuel bills and comfort this winter.

The LEAP 'Making it Happen' programme aims to reach a minimum of 80 persons who are struggling with fuel bills, health conditions, or living in cold, damp, or draughty homes, across urban and rural Renfrewshire by 31 March 2017.

The initiative is supported through the Council's Tackling Poverty Programme which identified the importance of providing access to energy advice to all low-income households as a key priority in its two-year strategy. The anti-poverty programme is made up of more than 50 projects and has helped increase the income of families overwhelmed by benefit cuts and delays, low wages and the increasing cost of living.

'Making it Happen' is unique in its approach as LEAP's Energy team will actually carry out small practical actions such as draft proofing to help improve warmth and save money for people in the long term.

Lochwinnoch resident Gaynor Gallagher took advantage of the service, she said: "Thank you to the team for fixing my front door so quickly, I can't believe the difference it has made, it is so much warmer and there is no more howling wind and water coming through. My family and I are delighted."

The types of energy efficiency actions LEAP can provide ranges from fitting draught strips, letterbox/ keyhole seals, chimney balloons and pipe lagging to tank jackets, window seals, secondary glazing, loft insulation and introducing the use of low energy/LED light bulbs. They can also provide power down plugs, energy monitors and radiator panels to reduce the energy used for heating and lighting in the home. All of which can be delivered free of charge.

Renfrewshire Council's Depute Leader, Councillor Mike Holmes, said: "The Tackling Poverty Commission identified the provision of access to energy advice for all low-income households in Renfrewshire as a key focus area. The practical measures offered by LEAP will help reduce the pressure on household budgets at a time when the cost of living continues to increase.

"The Making it Happen programme, which we support through LEAP, helps address the points highlighted by the Commission by assisting those families struggling with fuel bills and living in cold homes this winter.

"This is just one of a number of initiatives delivered through the Tackling Poverty Programme which aims to change the lives of those living in poverty for the better."

LEAP Project Manager, Scott Duncan, said: "The work that we are able to do in people's homes helps put in place simple and small measures that will make the house more affordable to heat and reduce the amount of energy it takes to run the home. We often get referrals for people who just need a little bit of help and the feedback is great."

LEAP will consider and assess everyone who contacts them and if anyone is ineligible for this programme LEAP may be able to provide alternative help, advice or referral to a more appropriate source.

To find out more about the programme please contact LEAP in confidence by email to energy@myleapproject.org or call 01505 612 034.

 

Published on 27 February 2017

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