Keeping Warm and Healthy educates some of the most vulnerable families with young children on solutions to fuel poverty and fuel debt, linking energy use with healthy cooking and eating.
In 2017-19 236 families attended 96 workshops, while training provided to 91 frontline advisers means that an estimated 12,000 additional people will also benefit in the future.
Project Development Coordinator Jimmy Pugh reflects on the project:
I first started delivering Keeping Warm and Healthy workshops with Liverpool Lighthouse three years ago. They’re a community organisation and were running a project supporting families facing a range of challenges. Our workshop series encourages and empowers people to get involved in the energy market. We keep it all very informal and fun, with flashcards and quizzes.
Each attendee completing the 4-week programme receives an ‘energy hamper’ of a slow cooker, pack of LED light bulbs, three-tier food steamer and radiator reflector pack relating to the themes covered in the workshops.
Initially we thought that we’d need to provide lots of additional advice, but actually, after the second or third workshop, the attendees were picking it up themselves, or working together, going out and applying for Warm Home Discount or looking at switching energy supplier.
The nice thing is when I go back to Liverpool Lighthouse and I see some of the people who we worked with two or three years ago. They’ve become more confident and some have part-time jobs there or have become champions supporting the new intake of families.
Some went on to organise ‘Cook and Dine’ sessions where families would come along, prepare and cook a meal and sit down and eat together. And then they went one step further and decided they wanted to grow their own food, so they’ve started a community garden. It wasn’t all to do with us but I like that we were there in the beginning.