Bishop of Bristol backs new appeal to help older people survive winter

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Bristol and Avon Chinese Women's Group received a grant to help older people get through winter

Quartet Community Foundation are asking local people to support their Surviving Winter Appeal to help older and vulnerable people get through the cold winter months.

The appeal asks those who can afford it to donate their Winter Fuel Payment, or other contribution, to help older people stay warm and well through winter.

The Bishop of Bristol, the The Rt Revd Vivienne Faull said: “It is a mark of a civilised society how it treats its most vulnerable members.  I am so pleased to be supporting Quartet’s ‘Surviving Winter’ appeal.  It may not be too cold now but the weather can soon turn and we want to make sure that people who are elderly or frail get the support they need.  Please give generously.”

Benefiting local older people

Many older local people have benefited thanks to the appeal, including Mr and Mrs Pope aged 75 and 76 from Bristol who last year received £150 thanks to a grant Quartet made to their housing provider.

Mrs Pope says: “My husband had just come out of hospital then over the Christmas period my cooker broke down. I’ve had new hips and a new knee and I have arthritis. My husband goes for dialysis three times a week. We live in a LiveWest bungalow in Bristol.

“Thankfully he’s driving again now as we only have one bus an hour and that stops at 5pm. It’s hilly and we rely on the car. The grant came as a welcome surprise as the money helped towards the purchase of a new oven which meant we could cook hot meals during the colder months. It also helped with the utility bills.”

Sue Turner, Chief Executive of Quartet Community Foundation said: “It’s heart-warming to see how people respond every winter to support the appeal and help spread some cheer during the cold winter months. Since 2011 we’ve awarded £185,000 to 79 local groups supporting elderly and vulnerable local people. We couldn’t do this without the amazing generosity of people across the region.”

Donations are helping older and vulnerable people in many ways including providing:

·         community transport over the winter months

·         grants that help people keep warm and eat well

·         exercise classes to help older people stay fit and social through winter.

Groups that benefited from the last appeal include West of England Rural Network (towards an oil buying scheme to address rural fuel poverty), SWAN Advice Network (towards the provision of Community Transport) and In the Pink (weekly exercise classes for older people) and United Communities (extra winter support).

To donate click here and select ‘Surviving Winter’ from the drop down menu.