Give your fuel handouts to the needy, pleads charity

CHARITY bosses have urged people to donate cash to vulnerable people at risk in the winter.

The Community Foundation for Calderdale (CFFC), along with Saga, launches the Surviving Winter Appeal today.

With rising fuel bill and the prospect of another cold winter, thousands of people in Calderdale are expected to struggle to heat their homes.

It is estimated that last December, 25 per cent of households in Calderdale lived in fuel poverty, where more than 10 per cent of income is spent on fuel.

The Surviving Winter Appeal, a national campaign, was inspired by people who wanted to donate their winter fuel payment to the less fortunate. The CFFC will collect donations from the public and channel the funds to support those older and vulnerable people.

Chief executive Steve Duncan said: “This is a UK-wide campaign to encourage people to make donations to support those in need for whom the winter fuel payment is not nearly enough.”

Ros Altmann, director general of Saga, told the Courier: “With the cost of fuel this winter and knowing last winter more than 25,000 died of cold in the UK and with more and more people unable to afford to their heating bills, the risk is there will be many more fatalities.

“Last winter we had a number of penioners write to us to say ‘We don’t need our winter payments and want to help someone who’s struggling’. But there wasn’t really a mechanism to do it.

“This way we have a charity which can specifically recycle the fuel payments.”

Peter Wilby, chairman and founder of Halifax insurance firm Wilby and winner of the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Courier Business Awards 2011, is backing the campaign.

Visit www.localgiving.com/survivingwinter or text free with CFFC01 £2/£5/£10 to 70070.