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Source: New Zealand Government

  • $1.65 million available in Support for Energy Education in Communities funding round two
  • Insights from SEEC to inform future energy hardship programmes

Community organisations that can deliver energy education to households in need are being invited to apply for the second funding round of the Support for Energy Education in Communities (SEEC) Programme.

“In May, $1.26 million was allocated to nine community initiatives to help struggling New Zealanders make their homes warmer, more energy efficient, and get cheaper power bills. Households are already starting to see the benefits of those initiatives and I’m excited to see the momentum continue with this second funding round opening,” says Energy and Resources Minister Dr Megan Woods.

“As part of the last funding round an initiative by Habitat for Humanity – Northern Region, 60 homes on Great Barrier Island and Waiheke Island have received ‘Winter Warmer Packs’ in the last few weeks. These packs contain items such as blankets, energy-efficient heaters, draught stoppers and information packs. Another 390 packs are being delivered to low-income households in Auckland and Northland over the coming weeks.”

$1.65 million is available in this second round, which aims to help expand the network of organisations working to empower households to lower their bills.

“We know lots of people find it tough to keep on top of their power bills, especially at this time of the year. This fund means more people will receive free, personalised advice and information about how to make meaningful energy savings around the home, like making sure they’re on the best power plan or switching to more energy-efficient appliances. Even seemingly small changes can make a big difference.”

The SEEC Fund, can be used to prepare and deliver energy material, hold hui to share information and advice, and train educators to provide personalised advice in-home or over the phone.

Applicants to the SEEC Fund can also apply to the SEEC Equipment and Devices Fund, which can be used to purchase low-cost items to supplement their advice to households.

One of the key criteria for applicants is to have established relationships with the communities they’re trying to reach so they can successfully pilot new schemes or expand existing ones.

“This programme ultimately aims to support more households that are struggling with power bills. But in the process, we’re also gaining valuable insights that will inform the development of future government policies and programmes to alleviate energy hardship,” Megan Woods said.

In total, $7.91 million will be allocated through the SEEC Programme’s regular funding rounds until 2024.

This programme complements other initiatives across government, the community and private sector that focus on making homes warmer and more energy efficient. As well as the Winter Energy Payment to assist people with their power bills.

Applications for funding close at 5pm, Friday 30 July.

For more information on the SEEC Programme, eligibility criteria and application details, visit www.mbie.govt.nz/seec.

MIL OSI