Cumbria’s Deputy Lieutenant, Susie Bagot, is encouraging older people who receive the Government’s Winter Fuel payment – but don’t need it themselves – to give it to those in need.
Every winter, Cumbria Community Foundation launches a Winter Warmth Appeal to help poorer, older people to heat their homes.
More than 1,000 people are helped every year to keep warm, rather than choosing between heating their home or eating a meal.
Susie Bagot, MBE DL, Deputy Lieutenant of Cumbria, said: “I would encourage anyone who receives the Government’s Winter Fuel Payment, who doesn’t need it to pay their own fuel bills, to donate it to Cumbria Community Foundation’s Winter Warmth Appeal.
“Many may think that having paid their taxes they are entitled to retain the payment. We could, however, regard this bonus payment from the Government as an opportunity to make a targeted generous gift to those in our county who need an additional helping hand at a difficult time of the year. I can’t bear the thought of anyone being cold in the winter, especially the elderly or those with young children, and it is not difficult to imagine how hard it must be to have to choose between heating, eating or paying the rent.
“The Winter Fuel Payment is given to certain members of the population. It is income coming to us in Cumbria. We have a personal choice but how much better to have the satisfaction of knowing that it is going to those who really need it so urgently within our county.
Andy Beeforth, Chief Executive of the Foundation, said: “The appeal only exists because better-off donors want to use their Winter Fuel Payment to help others, and we provide a simple but effective way for them to make a difference.
“The financial burden can reduce some older people to living in one room, going to bed during the day, or making the choice between heating and eating.
“We appeal to anyone who feels they could support us for this very urgent need to act now so that we can be ready for the cold months ahead.”
The Winter Fuel Payment of between £100 and £300, depending on age and circumstances, is made to anyone born on or before 5 November 1953.
How to donate:
Please visit our BT MyDonate page to make a contribution: http://mydonate.bt.com/events/winter-warmth-2018
Send a cheque:
Please make cheques payable to Cumbria Community Foundation and write ‘Winter Warmth Fund’ on the back. Send cheques to our office; Cumbria Community Foundation, Dovenby Hall, Dovenby, Cockermouth, CA13 0PN. If you are a tax payer, please also send a Gift Aid Declaration.
Donate via credit/debit card over the phone by calling 01900 825760. Lines are open Monday to Friday, 9.00am to 5.00pm.
The appeal, now in its ninth year, has raised more than £750,000 for those in need. It works in partnership with Age UK across the county who also offer advice and assistance such as benefits checks, signposting to other agencies and inviting people to attend activities and groups.