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Project information

Winter 2016 Fuel Poverty Campaign - Older People

To highlight the support available to older people living in financial hardship in the UK who struggle to pay for rising heating costs. Too many older people face the stark choice of Heat or Eat? This campaign extension identifies ways older people can get the help they need to keep warm in winter.

November 2016 - December 2016

Charity information: Turn2us (formerly Elizabeth Finn Care)

Turn2us (formerly Elizabeth Finn Care) logo
  • Need


    Over 1 million low income older people struggled with their energy bills last year. Elderly people on fixed incomes facing this struggle are particularly at risk from dying from the cold. However over 25% of pensioners eligible for pension credit don’t claim it – government figures estimate £3.7 billion remains unclaimed each year - either because older people don’t know how, are unaware of their eligibility or feel there’s a stigma to claiming.


    There's over a million older people who are not claiming the Pension Credits they quality for. If more older people were made aware of the help that is available, more could claim benefits that they are entitled to. By maximising their income in this way, more older people could afford to keep their homes warm as well as eat adequately. They would have fewer money worries and increase their chances of surviving winter and reduce their risk of dying from the cold and aggravating health problems.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To raise awareness of the resources at Turn2us to help older people in financial need.


    » Text, email and social media campaign targeting ‘silver surfers’ to highlight the Benefits Calculator and Grant Search Tool at www.turn2us.org.uk
    » Email campaign to highlight the tools available to partner charities whose staff and volunteers support older people who may be in financial need.
    » Turn2us training to equip frontline staff from other charities to use Turn2us income maximisation resources to help vulnerable older clients.

    What success will look like

    Increased benefits calculations and grant searches by older people in need and those who support them. Post-campaign
    user surveys to establish the effectiveness of help provided.

    Aim 2

    To highlight energy saving measures to reduce future heating bills for older people.


    » Create Turn2us web pages and help sheets outlining tips and advice and signposting people in need to further sources of info and help.
    » Promotion of this info by email and social media to raise awareness with older people in need and those who support them.

    What success will look like

    Measurement of media monitoring across all channels at national and local level including social media. Increased website hits to Fuel Poverty campaign pages on energy saving tips.

    Aim 3

    To signpost older people with fuel debts towards available help, including the Warm Home Discount.


    » Create specific Turn2us web pages and help sheets with signposting to further advice from utility companies, energy charities and other organisations.
    » Promotion of this info by email and social media to raise awareness with older people in need and those who support them.

    What success will look like

    Measurement of local and national media monitoring including social media.

    Increased website hits to Fuel Poverty campaign pages on help with fuel debts.

  • Impact


    More older people staying warm and healthy in winter through obtaining affordable heat and so also being able to afford enough food.
    More older people accessing the help that is available, such as the Warm Home Discount.
    Fewer older people resorting to payday loans to get by in winter because of their heating bills.
    Fewer older people dying from the cold.


    Our Communications department not being able to carry out the project?

    Projects are fully planned and carefully managed to meet objectives and our staff are experienced in their roles and able to cover for each other in the event of illness.


    Donors and supporters will receive a monthly email report detailing ongoing and forthcoming activities. They will be thanked by email for their donation and post-event will be advised of the campaign.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £4,000

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £1,500 Email campaigns To 'silver surfers' and partner charities
      £1,000 Text campaigns To 'silver surfers'
      £1,500 Social media Promoted posts on Facebook and Twitter
  • Background


    Our Fuel Poverty Campaign will have a UK-wide outreach. There are 13 million people living in poverty in the UK, including 1.6 million older people aged over 65. Over 30,000 people die of cold every year and nearly 30% are over 65. The average daily excess winter deaths occurring amongst the over 65s is 206 per day, equivalent to 1 person dying every 7 minutes. Nearly a million people over 65 have cut back on food in order to cover the cost of utility bills.


    Our target group is older people in, or at risk of fuel poverty. From our research we know 70% of Turn2us users have annual household incomes under £15,000; 96% of the pensioners over 65 who've contacted us are in this category – putting them in the income brackets where the amount spent on energy as a proportion of income exceeds the thresholds used to define fuel poverty. Additionally 57% of the over 65s suffer from chronic sickness which translates to an estimated 4 million across the UK.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Turn2us is a national anti-poverty charity which exists to help people in financial hardship access welfare benefits, charitable grants and support services - online, by phone and face to face through partner organisations. Last year nearly 4 million people visited the Turn2us website and our Helpline handled over 85,000 calls. We also give direct financial support through the Elizabeth Finn Fund which in the last year totalled £3m, benefitting 4600 people.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Zena Carter

    As Head of Fundraising she will create ask to donors and supporters via a direct mail campaign and e-communications.

    Micky Forster

    Working in fundraising to monitor and report the results of direct mail and e-communications to track income and then thank donors.

    Adam Lake

    As Head of Communications creating the overall winter fuel poverty campaign and highlighting the awareness of the Christmas Challenge on our website.

    Navin Motwani

    Working in Communications generating donations through our social media channels, in particular Facebook and Twitter.