Hello!  December again – where has the year gone?  With winter clearly on the horizon, our thoughts turn to colder weather and how to keep warm. 

Many health problems are triggered or worsened by cold weather:  dry skin and cold hands and feet are annoying, aching joints, colds and sore throats are almost expected, but serious, life threatening conditions such as asthma, norovirus and heart attacks are also exacerbated by the cold weather.  The advice, of course, is to wrap up warmly and keep the heating going at home, which can be expensive.  There is much that can be done to help with the costs of heating – switching supplier for electricity and gas or joining an oil purchasing consortium.  Prevention is better than cure, so could your home use better insulation?  For those who are really struggling with costs, small grants are available.  Applications start mid November and the criteria are:

To be eligible for a grant someone must;

  • be considered to live in fuel poverty (spend more than 10% of their annual household income on fuel to keep their home warm and in a 'satisfactory' condition)
  • be in receipt of eligible means-tested benefits

And fall into one of the categories below;

  • be pensionable age and affected by fuel poverty  
  • be of working age with a disability or a long-term health condition which affects their ability to keep warm
  • be in receipt of Better 2gether childcare funding for their 2 year old   

Please get in touch if I can help with any of the above.

As ever, I am around for general help and support on a wide variety of issues including transport, mobility and safety around the home and reducing the feeling of loneliness.  Give me a call on 07557 922020 and leave a message.  I will get back to you as soon as possible.

Ellen Blacker

Health and Wellbeing Champion

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