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Support for those facing fuel poverty is needed more than ever

As the cost-of-living crisis continues and many energy support schemes offered last winter will no longer be offered this year, prices will be equally, if not more, challenging than last year.

Support is needed more than ever, with those who had previously been ‘just about managing’ now being pushed to the brink.

Cambridge City Foodbank is experiencing a 40% increase in need for fuel vouchers compared to the same period last year.

Those affected by fuel poverty cope as best as they can. People cut back on other essentials, such as food, or they ration energy use by heating only one room. Many people will also take respite in other warm places. However, with high energy costs and other living expenses, low incomes and energy-inefficient homes, these measures only go so far and should not be what anyone should need to resort to.

People in fuel poverty face serious health risks from living in cold homes, with cold-related deaths representing the biggest weather-related source of mortality in the country.

Among the worst affected will be the most vulnerable, including children. Living in fuel poverty can have a detrimental impact on children’s health, well-being and their ability to learn. Children growing up in cold, damp, and mouldy homes with inadequate ventilation have above average rates of respiratory infections and asthma, chronic ill health, and disability. They are also more likely to experience depression, anxiety, and slower physical growth and cognitive development.

How the Surviving Winter Appeal helps

The funds raised by the Surviving Winter Appeal are being distributed by Cambridgeshire Community Foundation’s nominated charitable partner organisations. Households who need help to stay warm and have access to energy throughout the winter can apply to these partner organisations, which use the funds raised to make payments or purchases relating to energy and heating, such as topping up pre-payment meters. Without the support, some people face no warmth in their radiators to keep the house warm and no heat on the hob to cook a meal.

Last year, the Surviving Winter Appeal supported a terminally ill woman in her early 60’s who was undergoing treatment and felt very unwell. Despite receiving Universal Credit and PIP payments, she was still struggling to pay her bills to keep her house warm. Due to the seriousness of her medical condition, it was important for her to stay warm, so the appeal offered vital support in her time of need.

How you can help

If you are in a position to help, please consider donating to the Surviving Winter Appeal to help local families and individuals facing a winter in fuel poverty. If you are receiving support that you do not need, such as a Winter Fuel Payment which is non-means-tested, we encourage you to please donate the equivalent or part equivalent to help those who will struggle to afford a warm home.

Hear why Stuart and Brenda support the appeal

How to donate

Donate via JustGiving

Donate via the appeal’s JustGiving page by visiting

Send a cheque

Please send a cheque payable to Cambridgeshire Community Foundation to the following address:

Hangar One, The Airport
Newmarket Road
Cambridge CB5 8TG

Please write ‘Surviving Winter Appeal’ on your envelope or the cheque reverse.

Make a bank transfer

To donate by making a bank transfer, please email to receive our bank details.

Partner charities supporting the distribution of raised funds