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Somali energy advice videos

A woman sits on the sofa, on the phone with an energy bill on her lap.

These videos were created to help Somali speakers understand home energy issues.

Project duration: January to December 2013

CSE has produced two new energy advice videos for Somali speakers, thanks to Big Lottery funding.

Through our energy advice work in the Bristol area and beyond, we give help and advice to a large number of Somali householders. When we made these films back in 2013, many were recent arrivals and had only a limited understanding of English.

Coming to the UK from a very different climate and culture can result in a number of energy-related difficulties for Somali householders. These can seriously impact their quality of life. Based on our work with this client group, we decided to produce two films that can be used by individuals as well as advice agencies.

1) How to avoid damp and mould

The Somali language doesn’t contain a word for damp – it’s an unknown quantity in Somalia. No wonder Somali communities often struggle with this problem in their UK homes.

This video explains why mould can appear, how houses get damp, and how to greatly reduce this problem by making some simple lifestyle changes.

2) How to pay for your gas and electricity

Many Somali householders are unfamiliar with the way energy is paid for in the UK. They may use a lot of energy, hear nothing from their energy company for several months and then be hit with a huge bill that they did not expect and don’t understand. Many then get into debt.

We made this video as a simple introduction to gas and electricity bills. It explains that energy is expensive and that the more you use, the more you pay. It covers making payments, identifying the most important information on a bill and how to check it against your meter. Most of all, we wanted to encourage people to get help if they are struggling to pay, rather than ignoring the problem.

Using the videos

The videos are in Somali with English subtitles, so that they can also be used with mixed-language groups, and so that an English-speaking presenter can understand what’s being said.

We think these Somali-language energy advice videos are the first of their kind. We use them at our energy advice surgeries and workshops, and we expect them to be very useful to other agencies in similar settings, especially to those who don’t have the luxury of a Somali-speaking advisor.

More energy advice videos

Browse our YouTube channel to see videos we’ve made on a wide range of energy-related subjects and for different audiences.

The Somali energy advice videos are part of our ongoing work to tackle fuel poverty and end the misery of cold homes.

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