Jul 11, 2017
Our agents approached us about a single parent of three they are helping. She is recovering from a domestic violence situation and last year unfortunately was the one that discovered her brother dead. This has triggered her PTSD and has resulted in her almost giving up and not opening her mail. This action, or lack of has resulted in her discovering she is now under threat of eviction and she has missed two appointments for Work Capability Assessments for ESA. She is receiving help and support with this, being forced into claiming JSA while she waits the outcome of her ESA appeal. Her benefits are already subject to deductions and she is now without any money until the end of the week to buy food to feed her and her three children. We agreed to send her £50 to tide her over until Friday.
Jul 10, 2017
A Grandmother in her early 50s who takes care of her Grandson full time had to give up working following a diagnosis of COPD and heart failure. She was in receipt of ESA, but was scored zero points at her assessment, despite being awarded PIP. Our agents were speaking to her on the phone and were trying to reassure her as she was in tears. She could apply for Job Seekers while she appeals the ESA decision but was very worried that her poor health would go against her. This was made worse by the fact that she had dipped into an unarranged overdraft, so when her PIP payment arrived in her account, she was hit by charges too, so she was still overdrawn. We agreed we would send across £200 so she could clear the overdraft to prevent further charges and would leave her with some money to buy food for her and her Grandson. Our agents phoned her up to tell her our decision and she was in floods of tears on the phone.
Jul 8, 2017
Our client, a disabled lady who is a wheelchair user has been honest with the DWP and Tax Credits about her boyfriend moving in with her and her children. Their reaction was to say that he would now be financilly responsible for looking after her and her family. She was told to contact and apply for Universal Credit as she was no longer entitled to tax credits. Universal Credits said to her as she had three children, she couldn't claim Universal Credit and was told to ring Tax Credits back. They then told her she had to apply for Income Support, the result of that was that the DWP then stopped her ESA claim. They have been left only with the Child Benefit of £43.10 a week to live off for a family of five. Her partner is unable to take care of them financially as he was laid off his job six months ago. They've been told it will take 2-3 weeks to get their benefits payments sorted out and reinstated. Meanwhile they have pennies on their electricity meter. We agreed to send them £100 to keep them and their energy meters topped up for the time being.
Jul 8, 2017
This was a quick one for us to sort out. A lady who has been on benefits long term has been finding it dificult to have enough money to buy any food so has been going without food at all. It was agreed to send over £50 to allow her to buy some food which would tide her over for a few weeks.
Jul 6, 2017
Some days we can go two or three days, four even and there aren't any cases we are made aware of, then suddenly like buses, we get three in one day. Technically the case of the single pregnant mother started earlier in the week, but has taken a day or so to get settled. Our case this time, was brought to us by one of our own biscuits, she had seen this lady posting about her dilemma and how they as a family were struggling to manage.
One of her older children was forced to live back at home, when she suddenly, through no fault of her own, lost her job and also was not given a P45, nor a P60. Without either of these, she was struggling to prove her entitlement to claim job seekers allowance or any kind of benefits. Her Mum thinking she should tell her local authority, just in case it impacted negatively on their housing benefit or council tax benefits, suddenly discovered she had to pay far more as the council were insisting her grown up daughter was contributing to the household income so they were making non-dependent deductions from their housing benefit and council tax relief. They were just about keeping their heads above water, but at the expense of what food they could put on the table. Although the Mum was being incredibly creative about what meals she could create and feed her family of six, it was beginning to take its toll on her, triggering her PTSD. We agreed that as they were certain that in a few weeks time things should begin to regulate for them financially that we would send across £200 to keep them in food for the rest of the month.
Her response to us when we told her of our decision was
"OMG this is going to help so much like you wouldn't believe. I can't say thank you enough xxxxx
Sat with happy tears. I can't put into words what I want to say xxxx"
Jul 6, 2017
We were contacted by a new to us organisation, who had a disabled client they were trying to help. After careful consideration and checking we then put their case to our members to vote on. This gentleman had been released from prison into temporary accommodation, where he had been living for some time. Now finally he had been offered a permanent place of his own, but of course having been in temporary accommodation, he had very few possessions. The agency were supporting and helping him all they could, but were struggling to find him funding that would also cover the cost of a basic washing machine. They had identified a basic one online that came to under £150, so it was put to the vote and agreed that the money should sent across straightaway. The agency were so relieved as they had very little idea of how we operate, and mostly how quickly we can respond if need be. We don't expect lengthy application forms to be completed, we don't even have a form,, but we do only take referrals via official organisations. We do on occasions get requests made directly from individuals, but we cannot accept those as we need to protect the fund at all times from being scammed.
Jul 6, 2017
We were approached about a single young woman who was expecting to deliver her baby daughter in the next couple of weeks. She is on contributions based Employment Support Allowance which means she is unable to access the maternity grant at the moment to enable her to buy some much needed things for her baby girl. Initially she was without a pram and a car travel seat, which she has to have to take the baby home from hospital and we were looking at contributing towards those items. However we were then updated to say that she'd been offered a pram and the loan of a car seat. She still needed a cot, some bedding and also clothing etc for the baby when she is born, so we agreed between us that we would make an offer of £100 to allow her to purchase those items herself, hopefully a pre-loved cot or Moses basket and the other items. Once her baby is born then she will be able, once the child is registered, to apply for child benefit and child tax credits, so hopefully her financial circumstances will then begin to improve.
Jun 30, 2017
Our client is a man who has been living on the streets for the past 13 years. He has finally been given a place of his own but was short of some things. There is a place locally that they can use to purchase refurbished items, and he needed a bed, a fridge and curtains for his new home. We agreed to send £200 so he could be provided with the items that he needs. Our agent was actually meeting him in person to make sure that all the items were got for him and then arranged collection and delivery. Hopefully he will now be settled in.