Cottage Centre: £20,000 lottery boost for new winter hardship project

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Kirkcaldy’s Cottage Family Centre is to receive £20,000 in National Lottery funding for a new project aimed at supporting those in the Kingdom who must make the “utterly heartbreaking” decision between heating and eating.

The five-figure sum will help to fund the Snug as a Bug project which aims to ensure that the charity can support those experiencing significant hardship this winter. It has come from the National Lottery’s Community Fund, which aims to support “projects and activities that transform communities, protect our heritage, and enrich lives through arts, sports and culture”.

The money will help to support families who have been referred to the Cottage Centre.

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Pauline Buchan, strategic manager at the Cottage Centre explained: “We are absolutely delighted to have received this funding for our Snug as a Bug Project which will allow us to ensure our children and families will have their basic needs met this winter by providing essential food and utilities support to those experiencing significant hardship.”

The Cottage Centre manager, Pauline Buchan. Pic: Fife Photo Agency.The Cottage Centre manager, Pauline Buchan. Pic: Fife Photo Agency.
The Cottage Centre manager, Pauline Buchan. Pic: Fife Photo Agency.

Of the groups experiencing financial hardship, one of the most affected are those on prepayment meters. It is estimated that around one in five households in Scotland use prepayment meters.

Pauline continued: “For those who have prepayment meters and very little income, life is even more challenging as utilities costs are averaging £10 per day and therefore for these families there really is a choice having to be made between heating and eating which is utterly heartbreaking.”

The Cottage Centre has seen an unprecedented number of referrals over the last 12 months as the cost of living crisis worsens for families in Fife. It was estimated that to meet the demands of their 2022 Christmas Appeal, they had to raise more than £45,000.

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Pauline added: “Life has been extremely difficult for families due to the aftermath of the pandemic and the cost of living crisis.

“With almost 2000 children and their families alone referred by partner agencies such as schools, nurseries, health visitors, social workers and other charities in our communities for Cottage Christmas Support this year, we know the difference this support from the National Lottery Community Fund will really make to their daily lives."