Cold Alert Card To Be Launched By Mary Coughlan Minister For Social And Family Affairs

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A pilot project which aims to help old people avoid hypothermia and householders save on fuel costs will be launched by Social and Family Affairs Minister Mary Coughlan.

The project involves sending temperature cards - like a child's temperature strip - to tens of thousands of households in the coming weeks. The scheme will be reviewed later in the year - and could go nationwide if successful.

The project will be funded by Donegal County Council, the North Western Health Board and the Department of Social and Family Affairs.

"This project will ensure that old people who are particularly at risk during cold weather can keep an eye on the temperature.

"This pilot project will reach into every household in Donegal and is similar to a previous scheme run in County Mayo. After a number of months the project will be assessed for effectiveness.

"I would be confident that this simple but effective measure will prove its use. However, it is also a measure that would be easily funded by a commercial concern - because every house in the country could have a daily reminder of a sponsoring product or service - the potential for a single or numerous sponsors is wide, insurance companies, household furnishers or home heat providers.

"I am pleased to be providing support for this project - and I would urge potential sponsors to consider taking this on board as a national project for next year, "said Minister Coughlan.

Ends December 28 th 2003

For further information:

Carmel Fields Phone: 01-7043860 or 087-2547232

Last modified:28/12/2003