Aug 22, 2017
We were approached by our agents about a single mum of two adult children. She has been experiencing social problems as well as issues with her family. She'd gone through a tough break up and had got into a fair amount of debt. She was getting help from her local woman's support centre, and this was where our agents came across her when they were asked to assist with her debt issues. She is dealing with lots of credit card debt and is being pursued for these through the courts system. She is very afraid of the consequences, and is already a shy and nervous person and this is just adding to her situation, making things even worse for her. We agreed to cover the cost of a Debt Relief Order, so that she could apply for this, and then begin to get her life back on track again.
Aug 18, 2017
This is the hardest group for agencies to source funding for, they are so far down the chain of needing help, with almost everyone coming before them. He had recently been housed, after a long time waiting, and temporaily houses in a hostel. We were asked to help them with purchasing some white goods, and they had a list of things they needed, as where he'd been moved to there was nothing there at all. We all agreed that we would send across £100 so that this young man with the help of his support worker, could try to source second hand items in the area that he lives so that he could get more for his money, plus it keeps things that are already in circulation out of landfill, so everyone wins.
Aug 17, 2017
Our client, a man in his middle 50s, has recently been housed into his own accommodation, but it is completely unfurnished. His agents applied to his local council for a home needs award, and they do help to a degree, but there is a limit of course. A mattress was found for him via his local Freecycle, but he needed a washer and some bedding, as having spinal issues means that he is incontinent and needs to wash his bedding regularly. We agreed to send over £200 to put towards a washing machine and some bedding.
Aug 16, 2017
Our person in need of help is a young single mum, with a one year old son. She has recently been moved out of emergency accommodation and into a temporary home. She has been dealing with the benefits system, claiming Universal Credit. There have been repeated problems with her claim, when some of the money has been missing, or her payments stopped due to a misunderstanding over her rent. She has had to resubmit her claim and will yet again have to wait to be paid, having to wait another 4-5 weeks. Being in temporary accommodation she is under enormous pressure to make sure that her bills are met, in order for her to move successfully on in the future. We agreed to send over £150 to keep her going over the next few weeks until her payments restart. In the meantime, our agents that are helping her, and who approached us, are helping her with a nil income form for her rent and council tax.
Aug 16, 2017
Our client is a lady who has been street homeless. Like so many people in this situation, they have nothing to put into their home, and most are not furnished or have white goods in them. The local councils are not always able to help. Initially we had offered to send across enough money to purchase a tiny table top oven, which includes a hot plate, but they are not allowed to have hot plates in their accommodation. In the end we agreed the sum of £100 so that she could hopefully purchase items second hand to help them set themselves up.
Aug 15, 2017
We were approached about a single mum who has divorced her abusive husband. She has been left with debts that relate back to the marriage, some of the debts not even hers. Her ex husband has deliberately arranged things with his work so that he looks on paper as if he is not earning enough to pay child maintenance. She was receiving tax credits, but then a malicious report was made to tax credits about her, and so they stopped her tax credits payments. This was unexpected and she needed to have money for food, so borrowed on one of these payday loans, which she is now struggling to repay, especially as tax credits haven't as yet reinstated her payments.
We agreed to send across £150 to allow her to be able to buy food for herself and her children, and this money will hopefully tide her over until her payments restart. We advised that she should investigate looking into a debt relief order, so that she could be free of the debt.
Aug 10, 2017
We have been contacted in this past week by organisations that are working with individuals to resolve their issues, as in each case they have been sanctioned for failing to attend a meeting. This is an awful outcome as simply missing an appointment, such as a bus being late, a date being forgotten (also don't forget, if you have mental health issues, then getting yourself up out of bed is like fighting a daily battle, let alone remembering an appointment), or even worse the claimant not being notified of the appointment to even be able to attend it. The knock on from a benefit sanction is usually the housing benefit and council tax relief payments also being stopped, it just goes on and on leading eventually to the threat of eviction. People who are struggling to keep body and soul together then have to 1) become aware of the situation, and 2) find help. This is a further hurdle for many that struggle with social interaction, agoraphobia, or more. Our agents are now faced with trying to get these individuals benefits restored, as well as their housing benefit and council tax relief. In each case we sent £100 to help them out, to have money for food, and in one case some essential clothes, until their benefits are restored.
Aug 9, 2017
We were contacted about a man who following a fall from a roof had been left unable to work. He is desperately in need of a vacuum cleaner and not having one is beginning to really get to him. He told our agents he was going to go without food so he might be able to stretch his benefits to be able to get a cheap one. They asked if we could help out, so we sent over £50 so he could be able to get a vacuum cleaner and still have money for food. Hopefully being able to keep where he lives clean and tidy will help to improve his self respect and mental health.