Dec 19, 2018
Following the article in The Guardian last week about The Biscuit Fund, we received an extra and completely unexpected donation with the express wish that it be used to make sure that families we work with had a little extra at Christmas. For most families it is an expensive time of the year, but for some they are struggling to stay afloat financially. They can't entertain the idea of buying any extra food or even presents for the children. For a child used to their parents not being able to give them any presents at all, just a small gift can mean the world to them, so we were happy to help. We scoured through our recent cases and found 14 families with children, and to each family we sent an extra £50 to use to make their Christmas Day that little bit more special. A big thank you to our special donor for making the Christmas of these families that bit more special.
From all of us here at the Biscuit Fund we wish you and your families a very Merry Christmas.
Dec 17, 2018
We were contacted about a young woman, here in the UK on a refugee status. She was previously in receipt of Employment Support Allowance, but her payments stopped being paid. Our contacts attempted to help her apply for Universal Credit but were told as she is in full-time education now, UC would not be an option available to her. She is now unable to afford her rent, pay her bills or buy food. Our agents have organised food parcels and small amounts of money, and have approached the college, but all they can help with is a small travel grant. We agreed between us to send her £75 to allow her to buy some food and pay for some gas and electricity.
Oct 13, 2018
We were presented with an awful situation, a young woman in her late teens, very vulnerable had lost her mother at the start of this month when her mother died, leaving her alone in a large housing association property without any income or access to any money. She is estranged from her family so is completely on her own and needs to arrange things like the funeral for instance, and to find out if she will have the right to stay in her home, given it was rented in her mother's name. She has been helped to open a bank account, but is without any food or means to buy any. Our agents, a local welfare rights group, are helping her to apply for benefits and will assist her going forward, along with the local mental health team. In the interim we agreed to send her £100 to be able to top up the gas and electricity meters and to buy some food.
Mar 2, 2018
A 39 year old man needed our help. He suffers with epilepsy following a brain injury which now impacts his memory quite badly. Our agents are helping him as his benefits have been cut dramatically and they are assisting him to appeal this. They have discovered that his home is in a poor decorative state, plus he has a concrete floor which means if he falls during a fit he can considerably injure himself. He is without a kettle and boils water on the stove, but there are health and safety reasons why this is not a good idea for him to do. They asked on his behalf for some funds to help him pick up some things to help him, which we agreed to do.
Jan 13, 2018
One of our very own Biscuits came across a man in the week who was sat out in the street with people passing him by. She commented that he was so cold he had frost visible on his face. As he has a dog, he is unable to access any of the homeless shelters, plus because he has a history of alcohol and substance abuse, he is trying to stay away from places where he might get drawn back into that lifestyle again.
Our agent bought him a fleecy sweatshirt and a couple of blankets in the sales at one of the main highstreet stores and gave him £10 to buy some food with. She said he burst into tears as she handed him the sweatshirt, she'd only paid £5 for it, but to him it meant so much more. She also gave him some food for his dog. Hopefully she'll be able to help him access some local support to assist him get into accommodation of some kind that will also allow him to take his dog with him. Until that happens, he will stay on the streets with his dog, as having his dog with him has at times literally kept him alive.
Oct 25, 2017
We had an easy case yesterday. Our agents contacted us about a lady who lives in their area that they are helping. She is taking care of seven children, and her husband is unable to work due to ill health. Her oven broke down last week, leaving her unable to prepare meals for the family. Our agents have managed to source her an oven via Freecycle, but they needed to be able to pay for it to be properly installed. We agreed to cover that cost of £50.
Oct 11, 2017
We received two cases in one day from the same agents. The first case was a young mum with a one year old daughter. She has fled a domestic violence situation with her daughter and ended up in a completely different area with very little in the way of personal belongings. The only way of cooking she has is to warm up ready meals in a microwave, which is not good for her or her daughter. She is currently at college, training for a career so that she can provide for her and her daughter in the future. We agreed to send to her £70 so that she could use that money to source a second-hand or reconditioned cooker in the area where she lives.
The second case was again a young mum, who had fled her previous tenancy with a newborn and ended up homeless. She has been sofa surfing with her young baby with various relatives and has finally, after a lot of hard work, been able to secure a flat for her and her daughter. She has very little in the way of belonging and has been living out of a suitcase. She needs a cooker and a washing machine, and the places our agents usually try for grants are not available at the moment, due to lack of funding. We agreed to treat this case the same and offer £70, and then she could choose which to buy, the reconditioned cooker or washing machine.
Feb 21, 2017
Our agents contacted us about a single mum, 28 years old, with two children, 10 and 4. The youngest has recently been diagnosed with Autism and they have moved into a property that allowed him to have his own bedroom. This mum has no family support as her own mother was/is a drug user and she has had no contact with her for 17 years. She has had to give up her job which she enjoyed to care for her youngest and was desperately in need of some items for the childrens rooms. She needed quilts and bedding for their beds and curtains for their rooms. The youngest suffers with incontenience due to his disability so she needed a new mattress for him, as well as some form of mattress protection. She had taken out a social fund loan to help her and the repayments for this would soon begin, so she was already be disadvantaged financially. We sent across £200 to cover all of this, so she could purchase what she needed.
Feb 13, 2017
We were contacted about a man who had recently been evicted from where he was living, through no fault of his own. His landlady, unknown to him, had become quite seriously unwell and started to behave quite oddly, which resulted in her evicting him from his home.
Initially his local authority were unprepared to help him as they kept stating they did not believe he was living at this address. Thankfully our agent was able to provide evidence to support he had been living there, so the local authority changed their tune and decided to step in and help house him. As it is short notice and currently they don't have any suitable properties near to his friends and his family doctor. they have found him temporary accommodation, but over an hour away on the bus. Currently he has to attend his doctors three times a week, and changing doctors at the moment would not be good for his mental health, so The Biscuit Fund sent money across to buy him an inexpensive toaster, kettle, small tabletop halogen oven, quilt, pillows and some bedlinen. We also funded his first bus pass, so he would be covered for the first month and able to continue with his existing doctor. An assessment is being arranged for Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and depending on the result of that, he might then be entitled to a free travel pass.
Our agent commented that just lately there have been a number of adults she'd been working with that had been tested as positive for ASD, where previously they might have been undiagnosed and presenting as "difficult" or "hard to reach" by the various agencies that has been working with them.
Sep 8, 2016
We helped a dad, 32 years old that lived alone, but had his two very young children over to visit and stay three nights a week, with a cooker as his had broken and he had no money to be able to replace it. A benefits team were helping him with arrears on his water bills, but he was careful to keep his meters topped up for his gas and electricity. We were astonished at just how tiny a sum of money he was managing to do this with each month, just over £250 per month Universal Credit. He was extremely grateful for the help.
Sep 6, 2016
An unwell Mum, who had recently lost her son while on active service found herself unable to find the funds necessary to purchase certain essential items for her 14 year old daughter's school uniform. We sent across £50 towards the items she needed to buy, so that the daughter didn't have to miss any of her schooling at such an important time in her school life.
Aug 18, 2016
A lady we were aware of had been struggling to manage in the rented property she was in, her ill health meant that her existing home was no longer suitable, and she desperately needed to move to a bungalow. A suitable property came up and all was fine, apart from the fact that she had to move with only a weeks notice. She was so stressed out about the situation, "how could she possibly be expected by housing to be able to move without giving the full notice on her existing home?" She is someone who has been through so much, losing two close family members only a few months ago, yet she always steps up and tries to lift others spirits when they are down. We were honoured to be able to offer some help towards the situation.
The paperwork is now signed, and she moves any day. The hard work for her now begins as she has to pack up her life and move to her new place, where hopefully she will be happier and better able to cope.
May 2, 2016
Another foodbank in desperate need of help. We are seeing more of more of them desperate for supplies in order to help those most in need. A £100 food shop was done and sent out to the foodbank in question. Needless to say they were very grateful.
May 2, 2016
It seems that the foodbanks are really struggling with bare shelves and unable to offer food parcels to those that so desperately need them. Another foodbank struggling in this way crossed our radar. We organised a shop which we had delivered to them so that they could refill some of their shelves and be able to help others so desperately in need. We try where we can to shop from the basics range so that we can help as many people as possible. Every single pound that is sent to the fund for help goes to projects just like this one.
Jan 11, 2016
We were made aware of a mother who was selling her personal belongings so that she could buy the ingredients to be able to give her children a Christmas lunch so they wouldn't miss out. They'd been through some very stressful times and she wanted for the children to have some sort of stability at what she considered to be a special time of the year for families.
The change in her personal situation, finding herself suddenly a single parent she needed to be encouraged to apply for the necessary benefits to protect the situation for her and her children. We sent her a small amount to make sure that she could go into the Christmas period, safe in the knowledge that lunch was sorted and she could focus her attention on what she could do to help them as a family going forward.