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Highfield Food Co-op, a Keighley based group that promotes carbon monoxide awareness, has benefitted from a grant of more than £2,500 from the North of England’s gas distributor Northern Gas Networks (NGN).

The group will use the grant to support their Energy Matters project which, through workshops and training, aims to inform local communities about the help available to reduce energy use and save money, raise awareness of carbon monoxide and educate on smart metering.

The group are also aiming to train eight people in the local community to be able to educate Sudanese and Kurdish communities in and around Keighley and Bradford about the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Vince De Bono, Community Outreach Volunteer at Highfield Food Co-op, said: “We are delighted with the grant we received from Northern Gas Networks as it allows us to continue to support people with information about fuel poverty and to raise awareness of the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning. We’d also like to thank NGN for their continued support and guidance.”

Tom Bell, Head of Social Strategy at Northern Gas Networks, said: “Northern Gas Networks are really pleased to be able to offer Highfield Food Co-op a grant as part of our Community Promises Fund. As part of the application the judging panel were really impressed with the group’s focus on training up individuals to work with their own communities that we might struggle to communicate with.

“As well as the grant we’ll also be supporting the group, and the other organisations who have been awarded a grant, with any other support they might need; such as volunteering opportunities  advice or how they can share best practice with one another.

“Community groups, and other local organisations, play a fundamental role in helping to identify and assist those who are in need and I’m very much looking forward to working with them on their exciting projects and their efforts to help make a difference to local people’s lives.”

Highfield Food Co-op received the grand as part of NGN’s £50,000 Community Promises Fund.

The fund, which is now in its second year, offers grants of between £1,000 and £10,000 to third sector organisations and community groups with innovative approaches to delivering sustainable initiatives associated with energy saving, fuel poverty, Carbon Monoxide awareness, raising the profile of the Priority Services Register (PSR) and STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) subjects across areas of the north of England.

After applying at the end of last year, the nine projects benefiting from the 2018 funding programme are: Age UK in Gateshead, Citizen Advice in Newcastle, Community Voice FM Ltd in Cleveland, Hartlepower C.I.C. in Hartlepool, Highfield Food Co-op in Keighley, National Energy Action, Stockton and District Advice, Information Service (SDAIS), The Canopy Housing Project in Leeds and Yorkshire Energy Doctor CIC.

The community projects include a whole host of innovative campaigns, from supporting vulnerable people with dementia access the Priority Service Register (PSR) to organising Carbon Monoxide (CO) awareness sessions and provide information on being more energy efficient.

Anyone that smells gas or suspects carbon monoxide should call the National Gas Emergency Service immediately on 0800 111 999. This line is in operation 24-hours a day, seven days a week.