Monday 7 June 2021

Community members experiencing financial stress can apply for the State Government’s $250 Power Saving Bonus through neighbourhood houses.

The Power Saving Bonus provides eligible Victorians with a one-off $250 payment, to assist households with the cost of living during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

To be eligible, applicants must hold a pensioner concession card or receive JobSeeker, Austudy, Abstudy or Youth Allowance.

Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio said the payment was part of the State Government's ongoing support for Victorian households as the state rebuilds from the pandemic.

“The coronavirus pandemic and spending more time at home has meant that many people have had higher power bills. This $250 bonus will help take the pressure off household bills for those doing it tough,” Minister D'Ambrosio said. 

To target eligible community members, the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning has engaged Neighbourhood Houses Victoria in partnership with Good Shepherd. 

"It makes sense to have our houses spreading the word about this bonus," Neighbourhood Houses Victoria CEO Nicole Battle said.

"Being such grassroots organisations, they are best positioned to reach people within their communities who already come to them for other support services such as food relief, job seeking support, digital literacy programs and Centrelink assistance.”

Nicole recognised that the online application process could be a barrier for some.

"We know there are members of our community who have never used a computer before or lack the confidence and skills to do something like submit an application online."

"This could be a barrier to them accessing the $250 payment so our houses are making themselves available to sit down with people and step them through the process.

"We don't want anyone who's eligible missing out on this important financial relief."

Applications for the Power Saving Bonus can be made until 31 January 2022. For more information on the Power Saving Bonus and a list of neighbourhood houses who are providing this outreach service, see the Power Saving Bonus Outreach Program webpage.