A charity is appealing for donations to help prevent older people from dying of the cold – after some gave up their own Winter Fuel Payments to help others in need.
Last year, Age UK Hillingdon received nearly £1,000 from a handful of people who were entitled to the Government payment but felt others needed it more.
Now the charity is calling on others to donate, as well as to check on their neighbours this winter as part of its 'Care Enough To Do Something' campaign.
Lesley McGinty, the charity's marketing and income generation team leader, said: “We were incredibly touched last year that people sent in their Fuel Payments, completely out of the goodness of their hearts.
“We would now like to appeal to anyone who feels they can spare something to send it in so that we can all play our part in preventing unnecessary deaths this winter and make sure that our older residents get all the help they need.”
In Hillingdon, more than 100 older people die because of the cold every winter, according to the charity, with many forced to choose between 'heating or eating'.
Nationally, 1.7 million cannot afford to heat their homes, with more than a third confining themselves mainly to one room to save money, the charity says.
The charity's Hillingdon branch, which is based in Church Road, Hayes, works with older residents across the borough.
Its schemes range from helping to ensure residents are claiming all the benefits they are entitled to, to sending out handymen to provide free energy efficiency checks at people's homes. The charity also provides draught excluders, blankets, thermals, thermometers and emergency food parcels.
To donate, send a cheque to Lesley McGinty, Age UK Hillingdon, 2 Chapel Court, 126 Church Road, Hayes UB3 2LW. Alternatively visit www.justgiving.com/age-uk-hillingdon
For more information, call 020 8756 3040 or visit www.ageukhillingdon.org.uk