Funding launched to tackle fuel poverty


The UK’s biggest electricity distributor is inviting not-for-profit organisations, charities and community groups to apply for new funding, to help tackle the threat of fuel poverty.

UK Power Networks, which distributes electricity across London, the South East and East of England, has already awarded more than £670,000 to 41 projects in four previous rounds of its Power Partners scheme. Grants of £2,000 to £20,000 are now available in round five, and applications close on October 25.

Financial pressures caused by the pandemic have seen more families than ever in need of advice and support around their energy use, and how to reduce their bills.

Giulia Privitera, social sustainability strategy and programme manager for UK Power Networks, said: “In our regions there has been a higher-than-average increase in people claiming unemployment benefits or Universal Credit (compared to the rest of England), and we are striving to make sure that support and help is available where it is needed the most.

“This winter, many will face real financial difficulties in keeping hard-to-heat homes warm so we have focused this round Power Partners on targeted support to tackle fuel poverty, through the community charities and organisations who can provide it in the most innovative way. We take an inclusive approach and aim to reach as many people as possible living in vulnerable circumstances, on low income and in low energy efficiency properties.

“We work hard with our partners to improve the Power Partners scheme each year to maximise its impact on hard-to-reach communities, and want to learn what has changed for our customers so that we can continue to adapt and make a real, long lasting difference to people’s lives.”

The focus will be on support services taking new approaches around such areas as energy efficiency advice and interventions, income maximisation, tariff switching and securing new registrations for the Priority Services Register (PSR) which provides help during the event of a power cut.

The fund is administered in partnership with leading energy justice charity the Centre for Sustainable Energy. Applications can be made via the CSE website and for more details email or call 0117 934 1400.