May 21, 2019
A young mum, separated from the child's father, due to domestic abuse issues, received £60 last week in benefits only to have a Payday loan immediately collect £52 from her bank account leaving her without any money for food. She has moved from pillar to post, to avoid having to live at home, and this has meant she has really struggled financially. The child's father was assisting with daycare for the child while she worked, but this has now fallen apart. She has no gas or electricity, and on the day we were contacted had just prepared the last pasta she had in the house for her son's lunch. Our agents have issued her with a food voucher, but she will have to wait until the food bank is open for her to redeem that. We agreed between us to send her £150 so she can stock up her cupboards and freezer and put some money on to her energy meters.
Mar 29, 2019
Our attention was brought to a man who is currently undergoing intensive treatment for cancer. Previously he had been self-employed and managing quite well, however the change in income for him has been difficult to manage. He is currently having daily radiotherapy and chemotherapy and the demands on his body means he often struggles to stay warm, which means putting on his heating which he cannot afford to do. This is causing him to become stressed which is only making the situation worse. We agreed to send him £100 to help with his energy costs over the next few weeks.
Mar 29, 2019
A single dad, living with his 6 year old daughter has been sanctioned by Universal Credit and will not receive another payment until 18th April. He has debts for his energy, tv licence, and council tax. He borrowed £7 to put on to his energy meters, but because the standing charges were £5, that has meant he is still without power. We agreed to send him £75 to help him out.
Mar 28, 2019
Our agents asked us if we could help a young woman who is currently employed via an apprenticeship scheme which means she is on a very low income. She has a number of debts which she is repaying, but she is being referred to talking money to help her get the repayments organised. The debt is causing her anxiety, and recently she has been off work due to catching a virus. The knock on of this has meant her income has fallen even lower, leaving her without food or heating/electric. Our agents have taken her to a foodbank to make sure she at least has some food but asked if we could help with the energy costs. We agreed to send her £80.
Mar 18, 2019
We were approached to help a young lady who unfortunately suffers with many health conditions. She is at the moment suffering very serious epileptic seizures several times a day which means she is unable to work as she would be a health and safety risk both to herself and those around her. Up until now she has been existing financially on just her Disability Living Allowance payments, so our agents are helping her to make a claim for Universal Credit, but they are going into this knowing that it will take at least 7 weeks before payments are properly in place. In the meantime she is without money for energy or food. We agreed we would send over to her the sum of £150 to help her out.
Feb 25, 2019
A single mum who is in receipt of Universal Credit to top up her wages is really struggling to manage financially. Her UC amount varies from month to month, but usually she has just enough to cover the cost of her rent. Once she has bought food, and paid her bills she doesn't have enough money to put any credit on to her energy meters. We agreed to send £100 to help the family out.
Feb 7, 2019
A former nurse now impacted by cancer is struggling to manage financially. She is in receipt of Employment Support Allowance and also Personal Independence Payments (PIP) however the PIP payments have now stopped being paid and she is currently in the process of appealing that decision. The stopping of her payments has made life extremely difficult financially. Her condition will only get worse than it is already, and the stress of her change of income has made matters worse. She needs to be scrupulous about hygiene, but is worried about having enough money to put the heating on so she can have hot water. We agreed to send her £100 to help her out.
Feb 5, 2019
This lady was brought to our attention by our agents. She is a lady in her late forties, that is in receipt of Universal Credit, but because her adult son currently lives with her that UC amount is seriously reduced. He is moving out soon to move in with his girlfriend, this will leave her subject to bedroom tax as she will be occupying a 3 bedroomed home. She is really struggling and is in quite serious debt, so our agents are referring her to their debt team to try to get this resolved. She has been a victim of domestic violence which has been so severe it has left her with a brain injury. This has meant she is unable to work, plus she rarely sleeps for very long as any noise and she wakes up. She is afraid to leave the house as her ex-partner knows where she lives and has already damaged the property leaving her with a broken window she cannot afford to have repaired and her landlords have said that because it was done deliberately they won't pay to repair it either, so she is in her home and it is freezing cold. She doesn't currently have any money for heating or for food. We agreed to send her £100 to allow her to buy food and put credit on to her energy meters.
Feb 4, 2019
This situation is a man that has been diagnosed with head and neck cancer, needing to have extensive surgery. He did have a job but had to give that up when he became too unwell to work. He was in receipt of Universal Credit, but recently had a work capability assessment (WCA) where they found him fit for work, despite the fact he is unable to turn or lift his head or arms. The outcome of the WCA has caused him emotional and psychological distress. He is still at high risk of infection, so it is important that he has access to hot water for keeping clean, however he is having to decide between heating his home or being able to eat. Our agents are going to help him put in an application for Personal Independence Payments, as well as appeal the decision of the WCA. We agreed to send him £100 to buy food and fuel.
Jan 31, 2019
This mother of a six year is in employment, but for the past weeks she has not been given any shifts at work. She is in receipt of Universal Credit but is unable to cover her council tax bill, nor have any money for food or heating. She has been trying to find a better job where she can be guaranteed hours of work, but so far she has not had any success. Her mental health and anxiety are being exacerbated by the stress of her situation. She is not due another Universal Credit payment until the middle of February. We agreed to send her and her daughter £150 to cover the cost of topping up her energy meters and buying some food.
Jan 31, 2019
We were asked to help a young woman who up until the 21st December last year was working. She has attended a couple of job interviews but so far has not had any success in securing employment. She is in the process of applying for benefits but has failed to get the application completed as she does not yet have a bank account. To apply for an advance on her Universal Credit payment, she'd need a bank account. Her friend will accept the first payment for her but is away until after the weekend. In the meantime where she is staying is freezing cold and she has absolutely no money for food or heating. We agreed to send her £70 to tide her over until her friend returns home.
Jan 25, 2019
We were asked to assist a gentleman struggling with anxiety and depression. He moved home in January 2018 and his gas meter was in arrears when he moved. Since the move he has been trying really hard to clear the arrears so that he can have some heating on in his flat, as the lack of heat is triggering his depression and making him even worse. His Universal Credits payments don't allow him to make any headway in clearing the debt and his mental health is really poor with this extreme cold weather. Our agents had tried other agencies for help with grants, but all so far had refused because of his arrears. We agreed to send him £100, so he could clear the debt completely and have £30 to top up his meter with.
Jan 17, 2019
Our case this time was a father of three children, twins aged 7 and a five year old. One of the twins is autistic and attends a special school. He suffers with anxiety and depression following the break down of his abusive relationship. The children currently live with their mother, who has mental health problems. The father has had the children staying with him several nights a month, but has had to tell the mother he is unable to as he cannot afford to heat his flat, nor heat the water so that the children are able to have a bath. His flat is rented and is currently heated by large inefficient storage heaters. He is desperately missing having his children and this is impacting negatively on his mental health. However the agencies that are helping him, such as his local foodbank are all reporting that he is engaging well and doing everything that is asked of him in an effort to improve his situation. We agreed to send him £100 so that he can top up his energy meters and be able to put the heating on.
Jan 16, 2019
We were approached by our agents, asking for us to help a man that is suffering with anxiety and depression. He is struggling to find work, due to him having a previous minor criminal conviction. He is in serious debt and this is only making his condition even worse. His home is very cold and due to debt relating to his energy supplier he is unable to live there and put the heating on, so he is currently staying with friends and family. We were asked if we could cover the cost of a Debt Relief Order, to the sum of £90 so that he can apply to have these debts resolved and hopefully have a fresh start with his finances.
Jan 14, 2019
We were approached about helping a single dad who has sole care of his two oldest children, and at the weekends care of his youngest two as well. Since taking on the care of the older children he has had to put in a claim for Universal Credit and he is really struggling to make ends meet. Our contact had been speaking to this man who said that he has nothing on his gas meter at all and 75p on his electricity meter. The house is cold, he is unable to heat it, nor does he have any money to be able to prepare a hot meal for them all. His next Universal Credit payment is not due for at least a week. We agreed that we would send over immediately £100 to go towards fuel and food.