The Green Doctors visit around 2000 homes each year across the Yorkshire and North East regions. They help households to save between £100 – 1000 per year on their energy bills through switching and increased energy efficiency whilst also making homes warmer and healthier.
The Green Doctor service is completely free and provides valuable assistance to many vulnerable households. It may be an elderly person needing help switching, a young family applying for energy grants, or perhaps someone suffering from a health condition exacerbated by the cold and struggling to keep their home to a safe temperature. The scheme is open to eligible people (see attachment) in all types of tenure. Housing Associations, Local Councils, privately rented and privately owned residents are all offered the opportunity to participate in the Green Doctor scheme. The aim of the service is to provide ‘assisted action’ in order for people to maximise their income and to ’empower’ consumers to make informed decisions.
1. Low income
2. Living with debt
3. Physical health issues
4. Mental health issues
7. In emergency accommodation
8. Poor housing conditions
9. In receipt of benefits
How does the programme work?
The local referral network provides referrals of vulnerable residents who are in (or at risk of falling into) fuel poverty.
A householder can apply directly or be referred by a professional / organisation.
HOME ENERGY VISIT:
A highly-trained Green Doctor Home Energy Adviser then carries out a home/telephone visit. This includes both a thorough assessment of the home such as checking for adequate loft and cavity wall insulation, boiler and central heating systems functionality and immediate financial help. They can install a range of technical measures including: LED light bulbs, reflective radiator panels, draught-proofing doors and windows and cylinder jackets. The Green Doctor assessor will provide tailored in – depth energy efficiency advice and help look for a better deal on energy bills and applying for grants such as the Warm Homes Discount. All the team are trained to assess and advise on issues relating to damp, mould & condensation such as behavioural changes to be made by the tenant to reduce the problem and impact upon the building fabric and decoration.
Based on the findings of the home visit there are a range of onward referrals that can be made. These include: referral to an income maximisation service, assessment for larger energy efficiency measures (insulation and heating), referral to the local fire service Safe & Well scheme, and identification of serious hazards in the home. With over 12 years experience, the Green Doctor team are highly trained in dealing with the wide variety of issues that present themselves during the many home visits we make and we have built partnerships with many local support organisations.
All Green Doctors are trained to City & Guilds Level 3 Energy Awareness 6281-01 as a minimum. We also have 2 fully qualified City & Guilds 6361 Domestic Energy Assessors who are able to assess properties and households for larger energy efficiency measures such as central heating systems and cavity / loft insulation. In addition all our Green Doctor team are trained to identify, advise and support households with damp, mould and condensation issues.
The Green Doctors have training in mental health awareness, suicide awareness, safeguarding, de-escalation techniques, crime prevention, dementia friendly training, Better Conversations, Universal Credit, Falls, Trips and hazards & hoarding awareness training.
In terms of outreach/marketing/promotion the Green Doctors delivered almost 200 presentations, talks and workshops in the last year to a wide range of both frontline professional workers and local community groups. We also deliver in-depth training with our own Green Doctor Accredited ‘Fuel Poverty Awareness’ course.
In order to increase awareness of this free service, the Green Doctors are delivering a series of presentations / group training sessions to both community groups and frontline workers.
Community group and Frontline worker sessions
Presentations may consist of a 30 – 60 min talk, can be tailored to suit the venue and the audience and cover such topics as:
- Switching supplier
- Payment options
- Smart Meters
- Energy efficiency
- Damp / Mould / Condensation advice
- Additional support
- Carbon Monoxide
- Green Doctor service
They have found from previous years’ experience of delivering these energy / money saving presentations that they are both popular and vital in enabling consumers and frontline workers to better understand their energy options in order to take advantage of the best possible tariffs, grants and schemes available.
They can also come along to drop-in-sessions at children’s centres, One Stop centres, Community centres, Foodbanks and events.
Please see the attached Green Doctor leaflet for full details of the service.
They are also running a variety of training/information sessions throughout the winter – below some dates for fuel poverty training course aimed for frontline workers – all are welcome.