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New funding for Surrey food bank to keep homes warm this winter

A food bank in Epsom and Ewell has been awarded funding to help families living in poverty keep their homes warm this winter.

From Press releases - 5 November 2019 12:00 AM

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Epsom and Ewell Food Bank has a £9,000 grant from electricity distributor UK Power Networks to help families facing a difficult choice of whether to heat or eat. The food bank team plan to turn houses into healthy homes by reducing heat loss and making money go further.

Everyone visiting the food bank will get a chance to review their energy tariff with an adviser and have a home visit to see if their insulation can be improved. Jonathan Lees, manager at Epsom and Ewell Food Bank, said: “We are delighted to receive UK Power Networks’ grant which will enable us to help so many families who are facing harsh choices this winter. Surrey is often classed as the richest county in the country, yet we have high pockets of deprivation with a stark contrast between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’.

“Use of our food bank has risen sharply and we know that means more people regularly have to make choices about whether to cook, heat their homes and keep their fridges working. With this funding we can offer advice and support to everybody that comes to the food bank.”

Epsom and Ewell Food Bank provided essential food supplies for nearly 4,000 people last year and demand for their services has grown by 45% this year.

UK Power Networks delivers electricity to 8.3 million homes and businesses across the South East, East and London, regardless of who people pay their energy bills to.

Veronika Karailieva, stakeholder engagement manager, said: “This project will help people in really vulnerable situations who may be faced with choosing between food or fuel this winter. We are delighted to support the food bank’s important work.

“This is one of the 24 community projects this year which have benefited from a share of £368,060 from our Power Partners community fund to alleviate fuel poverty, support people in vulnerable circumstances and make community buildings warmer and cheaper to heat across our regions.”

Power Partners is administered in partnership with leading energy justice charity, the Centre for Sustainable Energy. It opens for more applications in February 2020. For details on how to apply visit: