Warm and Healthy Bristol
Support for children with asthma living in cold homes
Project duration: July 2014 to July 2015
This project specifically targeted low income families with an asthmatic child for advice and support. The project was initiated in response to increasing evidence of the links between cold homes and health. Respiratory conditions such as asthma are particularly badly affected. The Marmot Review of Fuel Poverty and Health found that children living in cold homes are more than twice as likely to suffer from a variety of respiratory problems as children living in warm homes.
To try to address this we worked with asthma nurses, asthma clinics, school nurses, Bristol Children's Hospital, GPs, children's centres and local charities like Breathe Easy to create a referral service from frontline health staff. To help these healthcare and charity workers identify the people who are most in need of help, we provided staff training, ran advice surgeries in various relevant locations, and also ran workshops in schools to help raise awareness amongst young people.
Once people had been referred to the project we gave assistance with
- Fuel debt assistance – contacting energy suppliers to manage debt issues
- Income maximisation – checking for any benefits related to energy costs that the household might qualify for
- Energy tariffs – helping people change energy supplier or move from a prepayment meter
- Energy awareness – giving advice to householders to help them understand the importance of staying warm and also reducing their bills
- Energy efficiency measures – referring people for home improvements such as insulation
The project was funded by Scottish Power Energy People Trust Fund.
Photo: Zach Copley, Flickr, reproduced under a Creative Commons license