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Author: Age NI
Published on 12 December 2011 04:00 PM

Age NI is encouraging older people who are not reliant on their Winter Fuel Payment to pass it on this winter.

Age NI Chief Executive Anne O’Reilly said, 'We know only too well that for many older people, the Winter Fuel Payment is vitally important to help them to stay warm during the winter. 70% of older people here worry most about this very issue and we continue to campaign loudly for poverty and fuel poverty to be tackled in Northern Ireland. However, we also know that some older people don’t rely on that payment in the same way.'

'Last year Age NI received calls from older people who were happy, warm and connected and didn’t need their Winter Fuel Payment. They contacted us to find out if they could donate their payment to the charity, or for advice on how they could use it to benefit their peers who aren’t in such a comfortable position. It is this group of people we want to help us Spread the Warmth this year.

'We would encourage those people who are financially comfortable and do not need their Winter Fuel Payment to consider passing it on to Age NI or a charity of their choice so that organisations who can improve the lives of older people in Northern Ireland have the funds to do so this winter.'

Bro McFerran, Managing Director at Allstate Northern Ireland, commented, 'I volunteer my time to work with Age NI and I see the very real and valuable impact the charity’s work has on the lives of older people throughout Northern Ireland. Now that I’m over 60, I am entitled to a Winter Fuel Payment to help with my fuel bills during the colder months.

'However I would prefer to donate this money to Age NI so that they can provide much needed support to vulnerable older people this winter. I am therefore delighted to support the Spread the Warmth campaign this year and would urge anyone who feels like me to do the same and donate their payment to Age NI today.'

Age NI would like to encourage older people who are struggling financially to contact the Age NI Advice Service for a benefits check on freephone 0808 808 7575.  The service can help those most in need to access financial support that could make a tangible difference to their lives this winter. Pick up the phone and call today.

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For more information: Call Age NI Advice: 0808 808 7575