RNIB has been awarded £398,807 of funding from the British Gas Energy Trust

The British Gas Energy Trust is investing around £13m to help people in or close to fuel poverty by funding 38 frontline money and energy advice services across Britain.

Now in its 20th year, the Trust has helped more than £2.2 million people across the UK with energy debt grants, funded money and energy advice services and emergency fuel vouchers. In the last 12 months, the Trust has written off £5.2 million worth of energy debt and provided £20.5 million in grants to help those struggling with energy costs.

The Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) has received £398,807 from the Trust, to deliver vital support to local communities over the next two years.

The Trust awarded the funding following a nationwide mapping exercise which identified organisations that are best placed to help people avoid the burden of energy debt and make better informed energy and money management choices.

More than six million households across the UK remain in fuel poverty. With this funding, RNIB will continue the charity’s energy advice service, which is part of RNIB’s expanded Sight Loss Advice Service. A team of three Energy Specialist Sight Loss Advisers were introduced in January 2023 as a response to the cost of living crisis, and thanks to the support of British Gas Energy Trust. The 2024-2026 British Gas Energy Trust grant funding will support the continuation of this important energy advice service over the next two years as well as funding a new Income Maximisation and Financial Wellbeing Sight Loss Adviser specialising in welfare benefits to ensure customers receive their statutory entitlements. This new role will also support the wider sight loss advice team with increasingly complex benefit enquiries and identify areas to further improve financial wellbeing during these difficult times.

Over a 12 month period, RNIB expects 1,100 people will be supported with energy and income maximisation advice and support.

Lyndsey Warren, Head of Advice at RNIB, said:

“With support from British Gas Energy Trust, we have been able to provide specific advice around energy at a time when its needed most as a result of the cost of living crisis. This has been a lifeline for so many blind and partially sighted people living across the UK.

“Through this ongoing partnership with the Trust, the project will continue to build a legacy of positive futures for people with sight loss, increasing financial resilience and ensuring no one has to face this cost of living crisis alone.”

Jessica Taplin, CEO of the British Gas Energy Trust, said:

“I am thrilled that the Trust can continue this essential support across Britain. These funded money and energy advice services address root causes of fuel poverty such as poor money management and home energy inefficiency with an increased focus on the holistic support of increasingly complex cases and energy advice. With this funding commitment of £13m over the next two years an estimated 35,000 people across Britain will have access to these key frontline services in the heart of their community, with 60% receiving the critical in-depth support they need, thanks to Trust funded projects like Zinthiya Trust in Leicester or Bromley by Bow Centre in London.”

Related posts

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.