FEAST project launched for West Lothian

A NEW project aimed at maximising the income of both families with children and young people aged 16-25 has been launched.

The Family Energy and Savings Team (FEAST), mainly targeting those leaving local authority care, will provide a full range of energy services, advocacy and benefit health checks, alongside access to affordable financial products and services via the local credit unions.

Isabel Hutton, executive councillor for social policy, said: “We have already seen fantastic results with the creation of the Pensioner Income Maximisation Services and we have high hopes for the new team. These groups have been identified by West Lothian Council’s Advice Shop as being most at risk of fuel poverty.

“The outcome is to lift young people and families out of fuel poverty by reducing energy consumption and upgrading homes to maximum fuel efficiency at the lowest possible cost by ensuring properties are adequately insulated and heated.”

The project offers home visits which include accessing insulation and heating grants, payment methods, duel fuel and social tariffs, and billing issues. Customers will also be encouraged to open Credit Union savings accounts and assisted in accessing affordable loans.

The project is funded by the Scottish Power Energy Peoples Trust in partnership with West Lothian Credit Union Forum and West Lothian Council Advice Shop.