2023 has been another challenging year for the service and our clients with record demand for help during the cost-of-living crisis. We have seen headline inflation rates slow in recent months but the cost of essentials is still high with food inflation stubborn at 9%. In Broxtowe 50% of our clients now present to us with a negative household budget and we are bracing ourselves for our traditional peak demand period from January to March.
However, there is some good Christmas cheer in Broxtowe. Thanks to the hard work of our team of staff and volunteers and the progressive thinking of our stakeholders, especially Broxtowe Borough Council and National Lottery Community Fund we have been able to support more people than ever. We have designed new ways of working that is both efficient and ensures that people are offered the correct level of support to meet their needs. Last month we were able to report on how, in partnership with the council and other voluntary agencies we were able to reduce the level of debt in Broxtowe.
In our final newsletter of 2023 we would like to wish all our clients and stakeholders a very merry Christmas and a happy New Year. We look forward to meeting the challenge of 2024 and helping even more people to a better life in Broxtowe.
Christmas opening hours
Our offices will be closed from and including 22nd December 2023 through to 2nd Jan 2024 when the service will resume as normal.
Energy Saving Week 2024 (15th January)
The national Energy Saving Week 2024 commences on 15th January. If you are struggling with energy cost or just think you could be making savings then we have an Energy Advice team ready to help you. You can ask to see an Energy Adviser by contacting us by one of the methods on this website. We can also make a referral to Green Doctor who will be able to advise on energy saving measures and grants for your home. Energy Saving Week is every week at Citizens Advice Broxtowe.
December Day of Action
The December cost-of-living Day of Action focused on energy and energy saving advice delivered in partnership with Green Doctor.
Appointments were offered at our Beeston and Eastwood offices to provide income maximisation and energy saving advice to those are struggling with the cost of energy.
At the appointments nine clients benefited from advice on smart meters, energy saving measures, tailored to their circumstances, advice on Income maximisation, including; a benefit check to ensure you are claiming everything you are entitled to, information and support on grants available and how to apply and support with energy debts.
During the appointments we identified seven people who qualified for the priority services register.
In total we helped people secure over £16,000 in additional annual income and one-off payments. This brings the running total of income gained during the winter Days of Action to almost £107,000.
Green Doctor advisors were in attendance on the day offering appointments for home visits to look at energy savings measures and support within the home. There were 14 referrals for home visit from Green Doctor.
Changes to the Energy Price Cap
Ofgem have announced the energy price cap for next period – 1 January to 31 March 2024. This means that from 1 January 2024 a household with a typical consumption on dual electricity and gas will pay:
- £1,928 a year if they pay by direct debit
- £2,508 if they pay by standard credit (on receipt of bill)
- £1,960 if they have a prepayment meter
Prices are worked out per unit of energy used. If consumers use more they will pay more. The exact rate and standing charge will depend on the region where the consumer lives. Prepayment customers will continue to benefit from the Energy Price Guarantee, delivered as a discount to electricity and gas standing charges.
Citizens Advice have updated their page on the efficiency of electrical devices.
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