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Taking Charge of the Energy Crisis

As the cost-of-living crisis continues to grip Britain, Community Integrated Care has launched a unique campaign to support people to cut their energy bills. With people with support needs frequently paying more than double the energy bills of the wider public, and many social care workers struggling with escalating prices, ‘Taking Charge’ (www.TakingChargeEnergy.co.uk) offers vital free support at this most difficult of times.

Created by our charity, Taking Charge is open for anyone to access and has been designed specially to support those accessing and working in social care, to minimise the impact of the growing energy crisis.

Offering free live webinars, engaging videos, and a suite of accessible education resources, www.TakingChargeEnergy.co.uk gives people essential advice to save hundreds of pounds on their bills this year.

People with disabilities, and those who access social care, typically face far higher energy usage than the wider population. Research by Scope showed that in February 2022, 4.1 million disabled people were paying £300 more than national average household energy bill, with almost 800,000 people spending more than £2,500 annually, compared to the then national average of £1,200. These figures have inevitably increased, with the price cap for a typical UK household energy rising from £1,277 to £1,971 per year.

With the Taking Charge campaign showing ways that most households can reduce their energy bills by up to 23% by simply reducing wasted energy, and offering a raft of guidance on how people can buy better and be more energy conscious, participants can save hundreds – potentially thousands of pounds.

The campaign is led by Oliver Thomason, who has a learning disability and is employed by our charity as an Inclusion Coordinator. It offers a unique and inclusive approach to education, which is engaging for many people who have learning disabilities and require adapted information.

Following our pilot of the programme internally, 100% of our attendees have said that it has helped them to feel more confident in managing their energy bills.

Oliver Thomason said, “As someone who has a learning disability, I am passionate about supporting the care sector through this difficult time. I have learned so much about energy usage through co-producing the Taking Charge campaign. I am sure that this project will make a big difference to people’s lives this year.

I would encourage anyone who accesses social care or works in care to visit www.TakingChargeEnergy.co.uk and access our free support. There is really something for everyone in this campaign.”

The campaign recently appeared on BBC North West Tonight, in a feature on the cost of living and the effects on people who access care and support:

Do you access or work in social care? Or do you know someone who does? Visit www.TakingChargeEnergy.co.uk to explore advice on saving on your energy bills, and share the resources with friends, family and colleagues.

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