With energy prices and fuel poverty on the increase, Circle Housing (now part of the Clarion group) are keen to do everything they can to help their customers minimise their fuel bills and maximise their comfort. Circle commissioned CAG to develop and deliver a training programme for the housing provider’s Resident Energy Champions. Circle manages over 65,000 homes, and provides services for around 300,000 people across the UK.
How we delivered the project
Working with Circle’s Group Head of Energy and Green Strategy, CAG developed a series of interactive training sessions covering topics such as cutting bills through behaviour change, switching provider plus efficient lighting and appliances. Sessions were also delivered on how to communicate energy messages to the wider community. CAG has supported champions by producing a comprehensive champions’ handbook, containing a set of handouts on different topics plus ideas for running different activities in their community. Ongoing engagement of champions is supported through a quarterly newsletter, which CAG produces, and the organisation of an annual celebratory event which brings all the champions together to share ideas.
CAG also developed and delivered a training session for frontline staff on how to suport tenants to reduce their energy bills.
In total, CAG has delivered over 30 training sessions on a range of topics at different locations within the Circle group. Each session had between 4 and 20 participants. Feedback was very encouraging; every participant at the initial session was keen to go on and work as a Resident Energy Champion, with 96% rating the training as ‘very good’.
There is now a network of around 50 energy champions who attend the training and organise events in their communities. Champions are now working with their Resident Involvement Officers to spread the word through distributing ‘top tips’ sheets at coffee mornings, running energy saving stalls at community events and giving talks to local groups about how to cut energy bills.
Helen Coates, Group Energy Policy and Partnerships Officer at Circle said “We’ve had really positive feedback from all the residents who took part in the training sessions; our new Resident Energy Champions now feel fully prepared to speak to their family, friends and neighbours about saving energy and reducing their energy bills.”