Bristol Volunteers Get Energy

Recruiting enthusiastic people from across Bristol to spread the energy saving message

Project duration: May 2011 to July 2012

There are already thousands of people who give up large amounts of their free time to help run the large network of community groups which are active across the city of Bristol. From residents and tenants associations, to support groups, special interest and sports clubs, all the way through to environmental groups, the network of community groups in Bristol is widespread and diverse.

A new CSE initiative aims to tap into this network by recruiting members of different groups to inspire action on household energy within their community.

Bristol Volunteers Get Energy (BVGE) will offer a ‘menu’ of support which will suit individuals from a wide range of backgrounds all possessing different skills, interests, levels of knowledge about energy issues – and varying levels of commitment – to help them communicate and deliver energy saving activities.

The first phase of the initiative is to find people who are keen to learn more about sustainable energy in the home and who would like to get involved in community energy saving activities. They will then be provided with an overview of energy saving in the home alongside helping the CSE team to plan activities to suit their communities.

Those who choose to get involved in the project will be offered a range of support to maximise the effectiveness of the delivery of their energy-saving activities, including:

  • training
  • work-shadowing
  • information
  • materials and equipment
  • expert input
  • dedicated volunteer buddy

Initially, BVGE will focus on encouraging volunteers with activities in four areas:

  1. draught-busting
  2. energy advice talks
  3. household energy checks
  4. showing people how to read their meters and set heating controls

The 'community energy advisors' will be supported in teams and will be expected to take forward activity in a way that best suits their community.

A householder survey assessing the levels of interest from householders in the range of services offered by the 'community energy advisors' will also be produced. The results of this survey will not only help local groups tailor their activities to suit local people, but will also help shape the future direction of support for voluntary action offered by CSE.

The model builds on the experience and learning from similar programmes run by Global Action Plan, The Transition Network and Going Carbon Neutral Stirling.

To register interest in being part of the volunteer programme download the form from the relevant links box in the right hand column, complete and email to: volunteers@cse.org.uk.

You can also find out more about volunteering at CSE by seeing our latest project aimed at recruiting volunteers, Home Energy Project Assistants.

To speak to someone about home energy advice, please contact CSE's Home Energy Team (freephone) or email: home.energy@cse.org.uk.

You can also follow us on twitter: @cse_homeenergy.

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