Surviving Winter Campaign 2019/2020 Launched

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HIWCF has launched the Surviving Winter 2019-2020 campaign, to help tackle fuel poverty for older and vulnerable people struggling to keep warm across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight during winter time. Those across the region who are in receipt of the Government ‘Winter Fuel Payment’ are being asked to donate their payment to the campaign if they are in a fortunate enough position to be able to do so. In addition, individuals, families and businesses wanting to lend their support to ‘Surviving Winter’ can make a donation to help those in need.

When the weather gets chilly, most of us simply boost up our heating thermostat without a second thought as to how we will pay the fuel bill when it arrives. For people living within limited means, this is sadly not an option, as choosing to keep warm means using finances that would otherwise go towards essentials such as food or medicine.

The Office of National Statistics indicate that 1,682 more people died in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight during the winter of 2017-2018 compared to the rest of the year, with National Energy Action (NEA) claiming that living in a cold house is a major factor in increasing susceptibility to serious illness and death. In the 2018-2019 winter period, there were 21,900 excess winter deaths across England, and NEA believe that up to 30% of these deaths were attributable to the impact that cold homes have on those with respiratory and cardio-vascular diseases.

The funds raised by the Surviving Winter campaign are awarded as grants to vulnerable local people to ensure they can afford to stay warm, eat well and remain mobile during the coldest months. Practical help can also be provided to help with travel to doctor’s appointments, assistance with shopping for essential items and support to get out of the house and meet up with friends at a local community club for some company and a natter over a cup of tea.

 Grant Cornwell MBE, Chief Executive at HIWCF commented: “The campaign relies almost wholly on donations of unwanted winter fuel payments, and last year we raised over £9,400 from generous donors who were inspired to help those in need across the region. We know that an increasing number of people are struggling to get by on a daily basis, you only need to look at the increase in people using foodbanks to see this, and for them, winter is a real challenge due to fuel bill prices and the increase in the cost of living. Even attempting to keep one room warm in their homes is not possible, and so we are asking individuals, families and businesses to make a donation to help local people in need, or if you are in a position to do so, please help us by recycling your annual winter fuel payment to HIWCF.”

Please donate generously to the Surviving Winter Campaign, go to www.hiwcf.com and click the blue ‘Donate’ button below to take you through to the Virgin Money Giving Platform for HIWCF. Please key in ‘Surviving Winter in the message section to ensure that we correctly allocate your gift on your behalf.

Alternatively, please send your donation by cheque to: The Chief Executive, Surviving Winter Campaign, HIWCF, Dame Mary Fagan House, Lutyens Close, Basingstoke, RG24 8AG. Cheques should be made payable to Hampshire & Isle of Wight Community Foundation.

HIWCF can claim an additional 25p for every £1 you donate, (it will not cost you any extra). To enable us to claim the Gift Aid, please complete and return the Gift Aid Form if applicable, to the address in the above paragraph. Gift Aid Declaration

Thank you for your support.

– ENDS –

 NOTES TO EDITORS

Contact details for Editor:

Name:                           Lucy Sweet, Marketing Manager / Grant Cornwell MBE, Chief Executive

Email:                           lucy@hiwcf.com      grant.cornwell@hiwcf.com

About the Surviving Winter Campaign

Surviving Winter was first launched in 2011. The original objective behind Surviving Winter was to encourage those in receipt of a Winter Fuel Payment from the government to donate this, if they were able, to support older and vulnerable people less fortunate than themselves. Since then the difficult economic environment has meant that more vulnerable people are in need of help and we have diversified the Surviving Winter campaign to meet that change to include general donations from the public.

Excess Winter Deaths in England and Wales 2018-2019 – Office for National Statistics

In the 2018 to 2019 winter period there were 23,200 excess winter deaths in England and Wales, down from 49,410 excess winter deaths in 2017-2018, which was the highest recorded since the winter of 1975/76. The Office of National Statistics Report said the decrease was likely to be down to milder weather compared to the previous winter and the lower impact of flu on the elderly in 2018-2019.

Excess winter mortality in 2018-2019 continued to be highest women compared with men and was highest in females aged 90 years and over. In England there were an estimated 21,900 excess winter deaths in 2018-2019 with 46% among men and 54% among women.

National Energy Action have reported that about 30% of excess winter deaths were likely to be attributable to the impact of cold homes on people with respiratory and cardiovascular disease. The organisation highlights the impact the cold has on increasing trips and falls and in a small number of cases, direct hypothermia.

Excess Winter Deaths calculate figures by defining the winter period as December to March, and comparing the number of deaths that occurred in this winter period with the average number of deaths occurring in the preceding August to November 2018 and the following April to July 2019.

About Hampshire and Isle of Wight Community Foundation

Registered Charity No: 1100417 – Registered Company Number 4534462

The Hampshire & Isle of Wight Community Foundation (HIWCF) is an independent charitable trust established to inspire local giving for local need. The Community Foundation works both with donors who want to give something back to their local communities and voluntary groups providing vital services for local people where often a few hundred pounds can make a real difference to their lives. Companies, individuals, families and trusts can establish a fund with the Foundation, which supports a growing programme of grant-making to communities. HIWCF is part of a national network of 46 Community Foundations, one of the fastest growing philanthropic movements in the UK. Local groups can take a look at the HIWCF website to see if they might qualify for a grant: www.hiwcf.com or email HIWCF at grantsadmin@hiwcf.com