As a modern customer-centric utility, what we do at Energia Group underpins the quality of life and living for people across this island.
We are the power behind the homes, schools, hospitals, factories, businesses and industries. We light up streets, keep transport moving and the economy functioning.
But our work doesn't stop there, we are also committed to making a positive contribution to the communities in which we operate and we align each of our businesses to ensure that we give back to society. Our Clever Steps Programme underpins our values of being: Trustworthy, Dynamic, Resourceful and Community-focused.
And in line with this our Brighter Communities Programme helps people to implement innovative and creative projects which will improve and support local communities. Since its inception in 2018, the Brighter Communities Programme has helped 16 communities across Northern Ireland and continues to impact on new communities for the better good.
An initiative like Helping Hands in the Community ensures we operate at a level of community involvement that is capable of making an impact. This particular initiative enables Energia Group employees based in Northern Ireland to obtain group support for an organisation or charity of their choice. With staff members in a position to access this scheme, our community involvement runs at a grassroots level and empowers employees to make a difference for these causes closest to their hearts. From special needs schools to fisheries and football clubs. Helping Hands in the Community has been an outright success. So for now and well into the future, Energia Group will continue to believe in, enhance and support local communities right across Ireland.
Community Benefit Funds
Via a number of community agreements and collaborations we operate several Community Benefit Funds around wind farm sites on the island. These schemes take the community needs into consideration and are monitored and adjusted where needs are seen to have changed. During one year alone, over €580,000 was made available in grants from Energia Group through Community Benefit Funds across the island of Ireland.
In addition to this, we have also donated €158,750 to community initiatives including Grow It Yourself, Seachtain na Gaeilge, Christmassy Homes and donations to local charities.
Energy Efficiency Funding
Via the Domestic EEOS in the RoI, Energia Group provided almost €150,000 towards SEAI’s Better Energy Communities programme. This programme focuses on utilising government funds and contributions from energy companies to carry out energy efficiency retrofits in communities across Ireland. Works are carried out in 2 main categories: community groups and residential dwellings and homes suffering from energy poverty. Retrofit measures include attic and cavity wall insulation, installation of energy efficient boilers and solar thermal and solar PV systems. These measures will result in CO2 savings of around 280 tonnes per annum.
Equal Opportunities & Special Assistance
Power NI offers a ‘For Your Benefit’ service for its customers which includes a benefit entitlement check, budgeting and energy advice for particularly vulnerable customers. In the year, 134 (2018 – 130) customers availed of the service. Power NI also offers a number of services to its customers that are promoted through its codes of practice (produced in several different languages) and through various advice providers, including Citizens Advice Bureaux and Advice NI. Power NI aims to assist its customers with special needs through a number of these services. Over 2,400 customers (2018 – 2,400 customers) with special requirements benefit from a range of services through Power NI’s special needs register.
Power NI engages with a wide range of organisations in the voluntary, public and private sectors focusing on social action and energy saving. Within the last year Power NI continued to work in partnership with Age NI in order to help improve older peoples’ lives. Social media was used to provide practical information to older people, their carers and families and energy clinics ran in Age NI shops to provide advice on energy efficiency and relevant grants such as NISEP.
Debt Prevention & Management
Energia Group recognises the social dimension of debt prevention and management and Power NI continues to offer a wide range of payment options and debt prevention measures. Approximately 157,665 residential customers (2018 – 157,090) use ‘Keypad’ meters. These pay-as-you-go meters enable customers to budget for their electricity payments, while Power NI offer a 2.5% discount off the standard price of electricity and provide user-friendly credit and consumption information.
Energia Group has a fair and ethical charity policy. Each year Energia and Power NI choose a charity as the focus of their fundraising activities. The Group also supports various local good causes nominated by staff and partially matches staff fundraising.
Overall, we choose to support those charities which our people, customers and suppliers can relate to. We opt for initiatives which allow us to make a difference by raising public awareness as well as raising money. Just some of the charities we support help raise awareness and funds to alleviate inner city homelessness and help to educate the wider public on serious cardiac and circulatory health issues and general well-being.
Getting behind worthy community organizations is especially important to us. In 2017 alone sponsorship of organisations rose to a 6 figure sum.
One of our latest sponsorships includes getting behind one of the oldest rugby grounds in the RoI – Old Wesley/Bective rugby grounds in Donnybrook, now heralded as Energia Park.