SSEN helps Island community respond to coronavirus pandemic

Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) has awarded over £43,000 to communities across its South East region to support them in the their ongoing response to the coronavirus crisis.

Twenty-one communities across the region which serves areas including Surrey, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight will benefit from awards totalling £43,880 through SSEN’s Resilient Communities Fund (RCF), which was repurposed in March to support local efforts in helping those most vulnerable during the pandemic.

Successful applicants from community, parish, town and borough councils have now been awarded up to £3,000 each from the £175,000 available through the RCF to provide food and materials to vulnerable community members, enable volunteers to support community coronavirus initiatives, provide PPE to vulnerable and frontline workers, run community befriending schemes and improve community communication.

All successful applicants met the fund requirements of providing extra help to those self-isolating or social shielding, such as the elderly or those with underlying health conditions.

Freshwater Parish Council – who established the West Wight Coronavirus Support Hub, a collective community response with 332 volunteers supporting people in the West Wight received funding of £3,000.

Ian Drummond, SSEN’s Head of Region for South East said: “It’s heartening to see how quickly the communities across our local region have worked together to support those in need of assistance during this challenging time and I’m delighted to see these awards from SSEN’s repurposed Resilient Communities Fund benefitting them and all of their efforts.

“Our customers and communities are at the heart of all we do and, in addition to this funding, we continue to work to keep the power flowing to homes, businesses and sites critical to the country’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.”

Since its launch in 2015, SSEN’s Resilient Communities Fund has now provided over £2.7 million to 538 local community projects to build resilience and protect those most vulnerable. The criteria for this year’s fund was changed following consultation with SSEN stakeholder groups, who strongly supported opening the fund early and targeting coronavirus response.

Niton and Whitewell Parish Council also received £2,000 for food and materials