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Sponsored content: Home Energy Scotland is looking for third sector partners to help ensure everyone who needs home energy advice gets it

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12th April 2018 by TFN Guest 0 Comments

When Home Energy Scotland launched a partnership referral portal, it never dreamed of welcoming its 1000th user less than two years later.

Set up in 2016, the portal helps charities, community groups and health and social care organisations easily and securely refer people for free and impartial energy saving advice.

Since its inception, Home Energy Scotland has helped more than a third of Scottish households and the thousandth portal user registered in March. Although delighted with its popularity, the Scottish Government-funded advice service still actively seeks more partners to work with. Whilst it gives much of its advice over the phone to householders, its aware that many vulnerable people don’t contact the service directly.

Benefits for all

The partnerships create benefits for everyone. Home Energy Scotland reaches more vulnerable people and advice recipients see reduced fuel bills and cosier homes, which contributes to improved health. Partner organisations see reduced workloads through the easy to use referral portal, and can monitor how their clients are progressing through an outcomes report. In addition, staff confidence increases knowing they have a valued and trusted organisation backing them up.

As well as the portal, Home Energy Scotland offers lots of other resources too – including on-site staff training, leaflets and factsheets in different languages and specialists who can attend events – not to mention the advice for clients and partners alike.   

An energy-saving emergency service

An important benefit for people receiving advice is the link to other support delivered by partners. The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) is one example. They regularly check home smoke alarms and provide safety advice, and often refer people to Home Energy Scotland. Fires can be caused through faulty heating systems and a cold, damp home – and concern about energy bills – can have an adverse effect on someone’s health. A referral has a direct, positive impact on SFRS’s aims.

Home Energy Scotland works on a local level too. It has advice centres across Scotland and works with GP practices where advisors provide patients with simple, straightforward energy advice.

Community connections

Aberdeen Multicultural Centre also has a very positive relationship, as programme manager Dr Narayan Shrestha explains: “The partnership has given us expertise to build our reputation and inspire trust amongst hard to reach communities, providing technical support and delivering effective and efficient demonstrations of energy-saving measures.

"As a result, we have managed to address and involve communities who have never participated before.

Find out more about Home Energy Scotland’s partnership with Aberdeen Multicultural Centre

Home Energy Scotland’s partnership story is successful – but there’s still much to do. If you think your organisation could benefit, email [email protected] or call Mark Macleod on 0131 555 9151. Home Energy Scotland is delivered by Energy Saving Trust. Follow it on Twitter and Facebook.