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Independent Living Support (ILS), based in Dumfries has secured substantial funding to help alleviate fuel poverty in the local area.

ILS has been awarded a funding boost of £60,000 from the ScottishPower Energy People Trust to help Dumfries and Galloway’s most vulnerable residents.

The organisation will receive the support for its Empowering People Plus project, set to begin in March, to provide advice services to individuals and families struggling with fuel poverty. It is hoped that over 3000 people will be helped through the initiative.

The aim of the project is to offer energy efficiency advice enabling residents to maximise their finances and sustain their energy payments.
Residents seeking support will be able to access personalised energy assessments as well as benefit health checks.  Through the advice services the project will work to ensure that residents are claiming what they are entitled to, helping families to maximise their incomes. 
Simple energy efficiency services such as draught proofing, thermometers, energy usage monitors and warm bed packs will be made available to the most vulnerable customers.  Funding will also be used to ensure those in urgent need will be helped to guarantee they have heat and light.
Ann Loughrey, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility at ScottishPower and The ScottishPower Energy People Trust Company Secretary, said:

“We’re very pleased to support Independent Living Support and fund the Empowering People Plus project. Individuals struggle with fuel poverty when more than 10% of their income is spent on energy usage and we work to alleviate this through grassroots organisations such as this.

“ILS has provided the residents of Dumfries and Galloway with essential services to help those in need find stability and support for many years. We are delighted that our funding will help the organisation to continue to work with those in need and help residents become more independent by alleviating their fuel poverty.”

Elaine Colquhoun, Financial Manager at Independent Living Support, said:

“We would like to thank ScottishPower Energy People Trust for its support and funding.  It will enable us to reach vulnerable residents and help them to find extra income from unclaimed benefits they are entitled to. The project will help to lift them out of fuel poverty and support independent living.

Monday, February 13, 2012