A SOUTH Tyneside woman is urging people to back an older people’s charity that helped her when she was caught cold.
Suzan Hussein was forced to rely on a portable electric heater to warm her home after the central heating system broke down.
The 52-year-old had been made redundant from Northern Rock in 2011 and used her savings to buy a smaller property in South Tyneside so, when her heating woes started, she had no spare cash to pay for repairs.
Instead, she relied on a hot water bottle and wearing additional clothing.
However, after speaking with a neighbour she was pointed in the direction of Age UK South Tyneside, which helped her secure grants that enabled her to have the broken central heating system repaired.
Now she is urging people to get behind the charity’s Bobble fundraising campaign to help fund the services that came to her aid.
Ms Hussein said: “I was absolutely flabbergasted when I found out that I could be entitled to funding to replace my heating, as I would never have known without Age UK’s support. I am extremely grateful for their help and would encourage anyone over 50 to get in touch.
“They have been a real godsend and have helped to ease a lot of my worries. I can’t wait for my new heating system to be installed, so I can begin to feel comfortable in my own home again.”
For the past two weeks, Age UK South Tyneside has been on a drive to sell 2,500 bobbles, as part of its Spread The Warmth campaign, to help fund services supporting the borough’s older people this winter.
Today is the charity’s National Bobble Day – that’s why there’s one on the front page of today’s Gazette.
Bobbles are on sale at the Gazette’s reception in Chapter Row, Age UK South Tyneside in Beach Road, Asda, and Tavistock Retro Italia in Stanhope Road.
Chief executive of the charity, John Briers, said: “This is an excellent example of the type of support that we can provide to older people living in our community.”
For information on making a pledge of time or money, call 456 6903.