The High Sheriff of Rutland Dr Sarah Furness has launched the annual Surviving Winter appeal, in association with Leicestershire and Rutland Community Foundation.
The Surviving Winter campaign started in 2010 as a way to pass on Winter Fuel Payments from people who felt they didn’t need them, to others who were vulnerable in the local community.
The national campaign is now in its seventh year and has successfully raised £5.5m and helped more than 80,000 people across the UK.
The campaign in Rutland will again support Charity Link and Age UK Leicester Shire and Rutland, which work to protect those who are most vulnerable from the effects of the winter months.
The charities both work with those in crisis, which can be due to loss of jobs, illness or gaps in funds between support from other agencies. The charities provide both short and long term help. In the short term food parcels, hot water bottles, help with heating bills, leaks or even boiler repairs are provided. They also work to seek longer term solutions.
Dr Furness is asking people to consider donating whatever they can spare this winter, with suggestions including the amount equivalent to a monthly fuel bill or a basket of groceries.
She said it was easy to forget there were poor people in Rutland as the county is perceived as affluent.
Research by Citizens Advice has also shown that people who earn their living in Rutland earn an average of £388 per week compared with an East Midlands average of £475 per week and the national average of £528.
Dr Furness said: “In Rutland the poor live alongside affluence which makes poverty more painful.
“It also means there can be rural pride preventing people asking for help.
“This campaign works discretely and uses local knowledge to target help where it is needed.
“I would really like, with your support, to make a difference this winter.”
To support the campaign, call 0116 262 4916 or visit www.llrcommunityfoundation.org.uk