Aiming Beyond Cancer (ABC)

EAS secured funding from SSE through the Industry Initiatives strand of the Warm Home Discount obligation. EAS has used the funding to support, via two of its member organisations, people who were experiencing difficulty with keeping warm at home at a price they could afford due to cancer.

Energy Efficiency Support for Cancer Patients: Shetland Islands and Western Isles

EAS worked with Tighean Innse Gall (TIG) in the Western Isles and with Shetland Islands Council (SIC) to deliver the ABC project. The purpose of the project was to offer a layered level of support to people with an ‘active’ cancer diagnosis. It used a dedicated intervention home visit service and offered a range of energy efficiency measures and support advice to identified households.

Shetland Islands Council worked in partnership with the Macmillan Nursing Service within NHS Shetland and was supported by Shetland Citizens Advice Bureau to provide energy efficiency support for cancer patients.

In the Western Isles, Tighean Innse Gall, the local housing agency, worked with key agencies such as Macmillan Cancer Support to offer home visits to patients in the Western Isles diagnosed with a cancer condition and who were in or at risk of fuel poverty.

The ABC project enabled the provision of replacement boilers, new heating/hot water systems and a range of other energy efficiency measures for a minimum of 60 vulnerable people – all with a cancer diagnosis – most of whom were not eligible for support from other schemes.

This work included:

  • Offering tailored energy advice to reduce energy costs.
  • Supplying energy efficient heating where the home had no central heating or an old, inefficient heating system.
  • Replacing broken or energy inefficient white goods with highly energy efficient white goods as needed.
  • Supplying highly energy efficient white goods where these did not exist, eg fridge/freezers and tumble dryers/washer-dryers.
  • Installing energy efficient controls on existing heating systems as needed.
  • Offering a range of insulation measures.

Often for those with cancer, energy bills rise as patients remain at home during treatment and recovery (often meaning that their income levels fall too), as well as the physiological effects of cancer requiring that they stay warmer. ABC provided a practical means of ensuring that at a particularly stressful time, energy bills and keeping warm were one less thing for cancer patients and their families to worry about.

The ABC project had a very tight timescale, securing approval in January 2017 and completed by May 2017.