Warm & Safe Wiltshire
A single-point-of-contact service for warm and comfortable homes
Project duration: December 2015 ongoing
Warm & Safe Wiltshire is a service provided by Wiltshire Council and Dorset & Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service, in partnership with CSE, to deliver a comprehensive energy advice service for Wiltshire residents, inlcluding those in the Swindon Borough Council area. The partnership has been running since December 2015 and allows people to access a host of support services through a single point-of-contact.
The service has pioneered the strategic approach set out by the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) that recommends a single-point-of-contact referral service for dealing with the problem of cold homes. Cold homes can exacerbate many existing health conditions as well as having a detrimental effect on mental and emotional wellbeing and this can cause an avoidable burden on health services. The NICE guidelines aim to set out best practices for reducing this burden, by coordinating the work of the health services with other organisations dealing with energy use and housing.
CSE’s project officer, Paul Winney, has said: “Warm & Safe Wiltshire is a great example of how a collaborative approach can help to deal with cold homes and the problems that arise from them. We’re really proud of how many people we’ve been able to help through the service. Being unable to heat your home properly can have far-reaching consequences, and it's important that it's tackled head-on.”
The Warm & Safe Wiltshire Advice Services offer:
- Advice on insulation, heating and draft proofing
- Guidance on heating systems and controls
- Issues with damp and condensation
- Advice on understanding your fuel bills
- Help with switching energy suppliers and fuel tariffs to keep bills affordable
- Fuel debt advice
Age UK, Aster Care & Repair, and Citizens Advice are some of the other organisations involved in the programme. The programme is funded by British Gas Energy Trust. More information can be found on the Warm & Safe Wiltshire website.