NEA began almost 40 years ago when students at Durham University established a group of volunteers to install loft insulation in the homes of elderly local people. Their experiences led them to realise there was a huge problem with people living in cold and unhealthy homes. Subsequently, working with Newcastle City Council, this project was replicated on a wider scale by putting together different funding streams to develop community insulation projects. On 18 May 1981, Neighbourhood Energy Action was formally launched as a development programme of the National Council for Voluntary Organisations.
Since then NEA has evolved into National Energy Action, employing over 70 staff across England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Our actions have brought real social change, enabling millions of people to access grants and assistance to help them live in a warm home. Our campaigning work has also ensured that fuel poverty is now firmly on the public policy agenda.
We also work closely with our sister charity Energy Action Scotland. You can find out more about their work to tackle fuel poverty in Scotland at www.eas.org.uk
Our vision is to end fuel poverty. We work across England, Wales and Northern Ireland to ensure that everyone can afford to live in a warm home.
We do this by
- Providing advice and support to people struggling to heat their homes affordably, either directly or via community engagement projects and outreach
- Campaigning and advocacy to ensure that the needs of fuel poor households are at the heart of policy decisions
- Undertaking research and sharing insights
- Developing accredited training and qualifications to improve standards of energy advice
We can’t do this alone. Our work is delivered in partnership with policy makers, manufacturers, installers, energy suppliers and networks, local authorities, housing associations, universities, and many others with an interest in understanding and supporting those in fuel poverty.
In 2019-20 we helped over 1 million people access support. Here are some of our impacts
- 6,000 people provided with direct advice and support
- 1300 clients were helped to access an additional £5.5 million welfare benefits at an average of more than £2,600 each
- 200 energy efficiency and heating measures were installed in partnership with gas distribution and energy suppliers bringing boilers, heating systems and energy efficiency into fuel poor homes
- 79 groups provided with smart meter-based activities through our partnership with Smart Energy GB, benefiting thousands of people over the age of 65
- 3,243 people trained, who in turn will support more than 1 million people
- 643 school children participated in our education and schools programme
- Helped secure new Government commitments to improving cold homes in political manifestos, created new impetus to debates on water poverty, ensured that the needs of vulnerable energy customers were consistently recognised and addressed.
“I cannot thank you enough for this. It has totally changed our life.
The scheme is absolutely brilliant and, if it has helped anyone else,
there are going to be a hell of a lot of happy people about.”
How we fundraise
NEA’s income is largely derived from grants, sponsorships, fees from members and business supporters and sales of training courses, examinations, events and consultancy. We continually diversify our income streams to respond to current and future challenges.
You can read more about our impacts below.