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AFNE Generic Module Resource Centre

Our challenge: reaching vulnerable people during the energy crisis

Older people (aged 65 and above) were one of the age groups identified as most vulnerable during the energy crisis.1 Particularly during the winter months, many older people can struggle with rising household bills. They may have to decide between keeping their house warm or paying for essentials, such as food. These challenges have an impact on physical health and mental wellbeing, as well as finances.

Amy, Creative Director, Active Families North East:

… with the cost of energy crisis and people … constantly worrying about fuel, we found the partnership has been a fantastic resource for the people in the community. The great thing about the activity is that you get providers coming to talk to you about key messages [that] you might not pick up if you’re not on technology or social media.

Our approach: partnering with Active Families North East

In 2022, we partnered with Active Families North East (NE) through our in Communities programme. This partnership enabled us to communicate the benefits of smart meters to individuals aged 65 and above. It aimed to raise awareness about energy usage and how a smart meter could help people manage their household bills. Additionally, the partnership helped individuals identify areas where they could reduce energy use, which could cut down on costs too.

Active Families NE is a charity that inspires communities to become more active and improve physical and mental wellbeing, helping reduce social isolation and build strong, cohesive communities.

Active Families NE offers a fantastic range of events and health and wellbeing activities for older people. These include Active Forever, a community class providing social and physical activities for the over 50s. 

The funding provided through this partnership enabled Active Families NE to run community events, where demonstrations of accessible smart meter displays and large print information were shown to support people who are partially sighted or blind. It's important that everyone can discover the benefits of smart meters. 

Our results: sharing the benefits of smart meters with 331,000 people

Through our partnership with Active Families NE, we reached 331,000 people in total, with more than 108,500 of these individuals aged 65 and above.

1 National Energy Action and Energy Action Scotland. (2022).
The hardest hit: Impact of the energy crisis – UK Fuel Poverty Monitor 2021- 2022. Available here

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