The Warm Welcome Campaign, backed by Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown, say that more Warm Spaces are urgently needed to support communities facing fuel poverty because of today’s Energy Price Cap announcement. Ofgem say the new Price Cap will rise 5% from January 2024, the coldest quarter of the year. It means that the UK faces a tough winter ahead, and the lack of a government energy bill support scheme this year means communities will be hit even harder.
The unwelcome news means that millions of Britons already struggling with the cost-of-living crisis, will have to make tough choices between eating or heating. Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown is leading the call for new warm spaces to come forward in a ‘chain of hope’ in every part of the country.
Gordon Brown said:
“Warm Welcome is one of Britain's newest and most innovative charity initiatives responding to need across the country. We want more Warm Welcome Spaces to step up this winter, providing more spaces, helping more people, offering more sustained support, in more areas of the country. Warm Welcome wants to create a chain of hope that links our country together.”
“In every area of the country there are people who can help, and in every area, there are also people who need help. I’m asking you to support Warm Welcome in any way you can, so we can bring people together as we face a tough winter ahead.”
The Warm Welcome Campaign was set up last winter in response to the worst cost of living crisis in 70 years. Last year 7,000 Warm Spaces emerged to create the Warm Welcome Campaign, and between them they received almost 2.5 million visits, providing much-needed warmth and welcome. As well as supporting people financially and enabling them to turn the heating off at home, the warm spaces had a positive impact on loneliness and isolation.
This year nearly 3000 Warm Spaces are already up and running, providing a lifeline to communities, but thousands more spaces are needed to meet the growing demand from millions struggling to make ends meet.
The Warm Welcome Campaign has an easy-to-use online platform for anyone who wants to open a Warm Space in their community in community centres, libraries, places of worship, sports centres, schools, local businesses, cafes or anywhere with a warm and safe space. The campaign offers every Warm Space access to support, resources, funding opportunities and help to get their space ready for winter.
Anyone struggling to keep warm this winter can find their nearest Warm Space via our online map.
Warm Welcome Campaign Director, David Barclay says:
"Millions of families will hear today’s news with dread, knowing that it will make this winter even harder. We know that last winter more than half of those who used Warm Welcome Spaces would otherwise have been at home with the heating off, and this winter things are no easier. That’s why we’re working so hard to encourage more Warm Welcome Spaces to come forward and offer the urgent support that people in their communities need. Any group that is offering a warm, welcoming, safe and free Space can register with us in a matter of minutes and become part of the movement for a fairer and kinder society."
The Warm Welcome Campaign exists to turn poverty and isolation into warmth and local connection and has a bold ambition to resource, champion and connect Warm Welcome Spaces in every community across the UK. The campaign is led by a coalition of over 50 charitable organisations and is delivered by the Good Faith Partnership in collaboration with Warm Welcome Spaces.