Charity registered in Scotland SC007270
The Energy Advice Project is a new and innovative approach to helping vulnerable energy consumers in the Stirling Council Area. It is unique, in that Stirling Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) is reaching out to the people who need help, rather than expecting to find them at specific events. The Energy Advice Service moves beyond the traditional ‘advice’ only model typical of most CABs, to actually delivering change with a capital budget and strong referral relationships to more specialist energy advisors.
Stirling CAB is well-known and trusted with a long-established local presence which can reach the most vulnerable consumers in Stirling and surrounding rural areas. The project is the accumulation of all our learning previously gained in helping people manage their energy consumption. To make a real difference, we realise our CAB must combine help in managing energy with physically making long-term changes in energy habits and consumption. We will therefore undertake home visits to inform on good energy practice as well as using a capital budget to make small physical changes to properties through a partnership with a volunteer handyman organisation “Volunteering Matters”. Where appropriate, our Energy Advice Service will refer appropriate clients to other expert organisations for specialist advice and/or infrastructure changes (e.g. new boilers). The proposal will improve the energy capacity and energy environment of 1200 adults in rural Stirling District each year for the duration of the project.
Roles & responsibilities
The Energy Advice Worker will:
• Provide independent and trusted energy advice to vulnerable people in Stirling and surrounding rural area.
• Provide a 2nd tier consultancy support service to build the energy advice capacity of the front line Stirling CAB advice services & support partner agencies
• Engage with people encountering problems with their utility suppliers and those in short and long-term financial crisis & resolve their utility debts
• Promote, encourage and empower local people who have yet to engage the Home Energy Scotland Warmer Homes Scheme
• Facilitate the installation of minor energy saving measures in people’s home (e.g. LED Bulbs), using our partner ‘handyman’ service
• Provide a tariff switching service for vulnerable people
• Train volunteer workers to provide continuity in assistance.
• Actively participating in and influencing stakeholder groups, e.g. Tackling Poverty and Inequality Group, Fuel/Energy Policy Forums and other relevant frontline workers’ groups, in consultation with the Bureau Manager
The direct beneficiaries of this service will be Stirling District residents who are struggling to fund, manage or fully understand their utility bills and energy usage.
Our service will be open to all who seek the help of CAB in Stirling, but also those with whom we can engage through the additionality of attendance at the two local food banks, library based outreach services in rural Stirlingshire and via our partnership with Hanover Housing Association.
While the service is available to everyone, we specifically expect to focus on those who are vulnerable or are less capable of effectively managing their energy usage and those who have not yet engaged with Home Energy Scotland to improve the energy efficiency of their homes.
Our approach is to be easily accessible across the whole district via the food bank, library outreach, home visits, CAB internal & external stakeholder referral, Sheltered Housing clinic & our Tariff switching sessions.
The Energy Advice Service focus is vulnerable consumers irrespective of their housing tenure primarily:
• Older People
• People with disabilities Low income families with young children
• Vulnerable people in fuel poverty
• People in hard to heat homes
In understanding the needs of the target audience & the approach to engage (as well as the design of our service), the Stirling CAB Energy Advice Service has paid attention to the key barriers & best practice guidance within the OFGEM Consumer Vulnerability Strategy.
Appointment is subject to a Basic Disclosure and two satisfactory references.
HAMPERS will ensure that individuals do not suffer through ignorance of their rights, responsibilities, or of the services available to them, or through an inability to express their needs effectively. It will inform, enable and empower both tenants & private sector landlords & letting agents to ensure that legal rights, obligations and appropriate fair & dignified practice is universally understood & utilised on all sides of the private sector equation.
HAMPERS will promote and prioritise the use of ADR to reduce and resolve conflict between the parties involved in the dispute whenever possible.
Specifically HAMPERS will meet the main charitable purposes of Safe Deposit Scotland Trust by:
Empowering, informing and educating both tenants and landlords on their rights and responsibilities as a tenant and as a landlord.
HAMPERS will share best practice with statutory/non statutory organisations.
HAMPERS will assist with mediation between tenants and landlords to ensure mutual respect at all times.
HAMPERS will ensure that current housing legislation is available in an easy to understand Plain English format & will produce materials in a range of inclusive languages & accessible formats
HAMPERS will improve dialogue and relationships between landlords and tenants, with a view to early upstream resolution including the use of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) when required.
The HAMPERS Worker will actively prevent homelessness and assist private tenants to remain in their current property through advice and assistance & representation in court where required. The HAMPERS Worker will facilitate the provision of budgeting and money management skills to empower private tenants to manage their budget effectively. They will also be responsible for building good working relationships with Private landlords & stakeholders across the region & the provision of information and advice that informs and enables good practice across the private rented sector in Stirling.
The Finance & Office Administrator will work with the Chief Executive and Treasurer to ensure the bureau finances are efficiently and effectively managed. This will include maintaining accurate accounting records, setting up payments, managing invoices and tracking expected funding.
Additionally, the role involves providing administrative support to the CEO, wider management team and Board of Trustees.
About the role
Are you looking for an opportunity to contribute to your local community?
Who we are
Stirling District Citizens Advice Bureau Ltd is an independent charity delivering free, confidential and impartial advice and support to vulnerable people living and working in Stirling District. We specialise in Welfare Rights, Energy, Debt, Employment, Immigration, Housing, and Health.
· To provide the advice, information & support to inform, enable & empower people to overcome the problems they face
· To ensure that individuals do not suffer through ignorance of their rights and responsibilities or of the services that are available to them, or through an inability to express their needs effectively; and to exercise a responsible evidence based influence on local & national policy makers
Join our Board
We are actively seeking individuals who may be interested in joining our Board of Trustees in the future.
The Board is composed of volunteers from a wide range of charity, business, legal, media and financial backgrounds.
We are committed to Equal Opportunities and are looking to ensure we are representative and reflective of the communities we serve.
We are particularly interested in speaking to people who have knowledge, understanding and experience in any of the following areas: -
· NHS Management
· Local Government
· Retired Elected officials
· Anti-Poverty work
You’re looking for an opportunity to contribute to the vision, mission and values of a community organisation that provides vital help and support to local people.
You’re inspired by the idea of developing and supporting a valuable public service.
You’re motivated to address the needs of vulnerable people resident in the Stirling District area.
You’ve got the time, energy and commitment to dedicate to developing Stirling CAB’s strategic aims and goals.
If this describes you, then Stirling CAB would love to hear from you.
This non remunerated role is both high profile and respected within the local community. It will offer new challenges, learning opportunities and broaden your networks.
Main Purpose:To provide immediate advice, information and representation to vulnerable individuals engaged in the Alcohol or Substance recovery process, provide 2nd tier consultancy support to colleagues within Forth Valley Alcohol or Substance recovery services and where necessary, refer and support clients to access appropriate advice agencies
The advice and representation offered will focus on the consequences of the Welfare reform Act and the economic downturn – seeking to resolve the practical barriers and stressors that inhibit Alcohol or Substance misuse recovery – primarily (but not exclusively) Money, Benefits, Debt, and Housing
To represent clients at Social Security Appeal Tribunals and Disability Appeal tribunals focusing on those which are a consequence of Welfare reform and the economic downturn.
Delivering a series of training sessions to front line ADP workers primarily, (but not exclusively) on Money, Benefits, Debt,Financial capacity, Employment rights and Housing.
The two CAB Addiction Advice Project workers (each 0.8 FTE) cover Forth Valley ADP. One will be based in the North Team (Livilands) covering Stirling and Clackmannanshire; the other will be based in the South Team (Falkirk Community Hospital). Proximity and access to advice on the frontline is essential and the workers would construct their availability and geographic location to maximise opportunity for ADP staff and clients to engage with the minimum of obstacles.
Appointment to this post is conditional on two satisfactory references and a PVG certificate.