Vinnies Healthy Homes programme helps with cost of living

A beacon of hope, Healthy homes, shines for Waikato families grappling with the escalating cost of living.

The groundbreaking move is an initiative of the Society of St Vincent de Paul, affectionately known as Vinnies.

The innovative initiative programme promises to arm residents with strategies to save approximately $1000 annually on power bills.

Healthy Homes marks a significant step forward in the region’s battle against financial strain.

It is an ambitious target to slash household power consumption by 30 to 40 percent.

The programme starts with a home inspection aimed at educating residents about the most efficient use of appliances and adopting energy-saving practices.

The architect of this visionary programme, Mike Rolton, is also the general manager of Vinnies.

Rolton highlighted the tangible benefits of the initiative, particularly the significant savings from the simple act of replacing traditional lightbulbs with LEDs.

“We give 12 LED bulbs per house, and the saving for each household per light bulb is approximately $37.80 per year. That’s a saving of $465 just from lighting” he says.

Moreover, Vinnies is advocating for a switch to a power provider that offers a flat rate, eliminating extra or disconnection fees, which could save households an additional $500 depending on their power usage.

This move is part of a broader strategy to alleviate many people’s financial burdens, especially in light of the increased demand for food parcels witnessed in late 2023.

Rolton says the conception of the “Healthy Homes” programme was a direct response to the rising need for support within the community to provide a more sustainable solution to financial hardship.

“We started to think about healthy homes in November, and we hired two new people because we knew it would be tough this year” he explained.

The programme addresses the immediate need for energy savings and reflects a deeper understanding of the interconnected challenges faced by families in the region.

Stories from residents struggling to afford basic necessities highlight the critical importance of initiatives like “Healthy Homes.”


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