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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

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Housing group helps tenants with fuel bills

 

Rising costs have made the group intervene with voucher scheme

Glasgow’s Wheatley Group is helping worried tenants cope with rising fuel bills – by distributing £2.25 million of energy top-up vouchers.

The housing, care and property-management group has issued over 30,000 top-up vouchers thanks to financial backing from energy regulator OFGEM and the Scottish Government.

Wheatley – which includes social landlords GHA, DGHP, Dunedin Canmore, Loretto, WLHP and mid-market rental specialists Lowther – is supporting tenants through its Energy Crisis Fund.

Tenants who are eligible receive a maximum of three top-up vouchers worth up to £49 each.

One GHA tenant from Milton said receiving a voucher was a huge relief.

She said: “At first, all my money was going on heating. I was really struggling to afford it and had to go to my family for help. Some days I would even sit in the house with no heating on.

“My housing officer put me in touch with one of Wheatley’s fuel advisors. She told me about the vouchers and sorted it out for me.

“She’s been a great help. She’s always there when I needed her. Knowing that support is there has been a huge relief. If it wasn’t for the vouchers, I wouldn’t have got through this.”

Wheatley’s Energy Crisis Fund launched in June 2020 when the group secured £300,000 from OFGEM to help tenants with fuel bills during the coronavirus crisis.

Since then, further funding from OFGEM and the Scottish Government’s Social Housing Fuel Support Fund has helped Wheatley support more than 30,000 tenants across the central belt and borders.

Olga Clayton, Wheatley group director of housing and care, said: “During these tough times, it’s more important than ever we help tenants save money and keep warm in their homes.

“These price rises are particularly difficult for tenants who have expensive pre-payment meters in their homes.

“Any tenant who is worried about heating their home should contact us straight away. We have a wide range of support services for tenants who are worried about money, putting food on the table, furnishing their home and getting into debt.”

 

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