By Lucy Ashton
Residents will have the opportunity to take part in a varied programme of events during the colder months, in welcoming warm spaces including libraries and community venues.
From family friendly clubs, to art and crafts, IT courses and book discussions, the schedule of free winter events offers plenty of variety for residents of all ages.
The Winter in West Dunbartonshire programme has been pulled together by the Council to ensure that any resident who wants to keep warm this winter can make use of the buildings open throughout the day, enjoy activities and access support.
It is the latest initiative from the Council to help residents with the cost of living crisis.
In June, a raft of projects were introduced aimed at reducing the impact of soaring prices on residents, including a £1 million cost of living fund, a £250,000 Energy Fund and £1000 a week additional funding for food banks.
Labour councillors Michelle McGinty and Clare Steel.
Councillor Michelle McGinty, Chair of the cross party Cost of Living Working Group, said: “We know that our residents are already worrying about the impact rising energy costs will have on them and whether they will be able to heat their homes this winter. Our priority is to ensure that we do all we can to help people to stay warm in their own homes, and our range of initiatives through the Cost of Living fund will go some way towards this.
“It is also important that we ensure that residents are aware that we offer a large network of welcoming spaces which provide activities as well as a warm space to be with free tea and coffee provided across our library network.
“These warm hubs are open throughout the year, but will be extremely valuable for our most vulnerable during the winter months.”
Councillor Clare Steel, Vice Chair of the Working Group, added: “Supporting our communities is always our priority and that is why, during this cost of living crisis, we are taking urgent, and tangible action to ensure that our residents are supported.
“No person should have to choose between heating and eating, and making use of these warmth network buildings will help to lower the cost of energy bills.
“Residents can attend for activities at these locations without any need to discuss their personal circumstances, which will help reduce the stigma that often exists around poverty and asking for support.”
The full list of events and activities is available here and will be updated regularly: Winter in West Dunbartonshire | West Dunbartonshire Council (west-dunbarton.gov.uk)
If you are worried about the cost of living and are struggling financially, visit Cost of Living Advice | West Dunbartonshire Council (west-dunbarton.gov.uk) for some tips, or speak to our Working4U team by visiting Working4U service | West Dunbartonshire Council (west-dunbarton.gov.uk)