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A SUNDERLAND based project has secured substantial funding to help alleviate fuel poverty in the local area.

The Shiney Advice and Resource Project (ShARP), based in Shiney Row, has been awarded £35,706 by the ScottishPower Energy People Trust to help 2000 of Sunderland’s most vulnerable residents.

ShARP received the funding to employ a part-time energy advisor to support its clients by offering energy advice in addition to the current welfare rights service it already provides. 

The energy advisor will provide practical advice on energy efficiency and will also be able to assist clients in finding other organisations in the area that can also be of support. In addition to working with people on an individual basis, a programme of drop-in sessions and coffee mornings will be held for people to access advice on energy efficiency and savings.

Ann Loughrey, ScottishPower’s Head of Corporate Social Responsibility and The ScottishPower Energy People Trust’s Company Secretary, said:

“We’re very pleased to support ShARP and fund its Energy Advice Service project. People 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 ShARP.

“ShARP already makes a difference to the lives of many people in the Shiney Row area and we’re delighted that with the help of our funding it will be able to target and further develop some of this assistance towards alleviating fuel poverty.”

Emma Frew, Project Manager at ShARP, said:

“We would like to thank ScottishPower Energy People Trust for its support and funding.  It will enable us to reach many more people in the area and target our help towards alleviating their fuel poverty.

“We have employed a part-time project worker with the funding which will allow our clients to get the best possible information for their energy advice needs.  People in the Shiney Row area can visit our website for information or contact us on 0191 385 6687 to set up a one-to-one appointment or discuss their concerns and how to tackle them.

“Local residents can access a range of advice, information and services to improve home energy efficiency and during the course of the project many people will benefit from ShARP’s fuel poverty initiatives.”

Established in November 2005, the Scottish Power Energy People Trust provides vital funding for not-for-profit organisations that help vulnerable people including families, young people, the disabled and the elderly, who need to spend more than 10% of their income on energy bills.

Shiney Advice and Resource Project (ShARP) was established in 1981.  It is a local advice and support agency that has historically used welfare rights as a vehicle for community development.
ShARP provides advice and guidance on debt, housing, employment and general welfare rights issues. Its team of experienced advice workers and volunteers can offer assistance and its aim is to help the local community to help themselves.

For further information on ShARP, please visit

Friday, March 02, 2012