Oct 29, 2018
We had an emergency request which we have been dealing with over the weekend (being volunteers working from home this does mean we work over the weekends on occasions). The request was made on behalf of a single mum of four children, ranging in ages from 5 to 15. All of the children have behavioural issues and she herself suffers with chronic depression. She has been in a string of abusive relationships, the first one began when she was only 14 years of age. Two years ago, with the help of a keyworker from a local children's centre, she left her last abusive relationship and took the children with her. She now finally has a place to live, but still has debts relating to her accommodation which she is struggling to deal with. Over the weekend she was without money because although she works 16 hours a week as a cleaner, last week it was half-term so she was unable to work as she had no childcare. Her support worker is assisting her with this going forward so she doesn't face this problem again. Her immediate problem that we were asked to help with was her inability to heat the home or buy food for herself and the children. We agreed to send her £80 to clear the energy debt, £20 to add to the meters so she could use her gas and electricity, and £50 to buy some food. Her local council have agreed to help her by paying some of the outstanding rent amounts directly to her landlord. Our agent contacted us later that day to let us know how much of a help this was and she was confident that this had been a huge boost for her.
Oct 2, 2018
We were asked to help a single mum of a one year old. She has been struggling to get housed and has been forced into private renting as there isn't any social housing available to her in her area. This landlord will accept people on benefits, however the house is really too large for just her and her daughter and she is struggling to cover the rent, leaving her without sufficient money to pay her bills or buy food. She has been taking out loans just to cover these essential bills and buy food, but with very little income she is seriously struggling. Now it is getting colder, she is unable to afford to put the heating on and warm up the house. Our agents are worried about the food situation and asked for help for her and her child. We agreed to send her £100 to use to buy food and to put some money on her meters so she can afford to put the heating on.
Aug 17, 2018
We were approached about a single mum of three children, two under 5 and a seven year old. The two youngest children have development and behaviour issues, and because of this, she sleeps downstairs and the children between them share the two bedrooms in her tiny house. She is currently sleeping on the floor as she is so concerned about the children's issues, she would rather do that than disrupt their bedtime routines, as poor sleep for them has a knock on effect the next day. We sent to her £100 so she could put that towards a sofa bed, so she would have atleast somewhere to sleep, rather than on the floor.
Aug 10, 2018
We were asked to help a single mum of two children, the youngest is only three years old. Two years ago she fled an abusive marriage and they went to live in a hostel. She has now been given social housing, but the house is damp and there are repairs that need to be carried out. Our agents counted 12 separate issues with the property, which they and a solicitor are working on getting the repairs prioritised. This lady left everything behind when they fled, so they are having to start over. She needs bedding, towels, wardrobes, carpet for the stairs as what is there from a previous tenant is worn and dangerous. She has the upcoming expense of school uniforms too. Our agents have applied for funding to help with the uniforms, but asked if we could help with some of the other things she needs. We agreed to send over £100 so she can buy some essentials, and hopefully a secondhand wardrobe.
Aug 10, 2018
Our case this time is a young single mum of four children. She has had a very troubled life, finding herself repeatedly in abusive relationships. At one point she was kidnapped and attacked by some men unknown to her. This has left her with extreme anxiety and unable to trust anyone. Three of the four children live with her, and the two youngest do not have mattresses on their beds, although she has bed frames for them. She sleeps on the sofa and allows the children to sleep in her bed. We were asked to consider sending her some money so that she could buy some mattresses and bedding for each of the beds so that they can all have a decent nights sleep. We agreed to send her £100 to be able to do this.
Jul 5, 2018
A young single mum has been released from hospital after having some serious treatment only to find that the renewal of her benefits has not been processed correctly leaving her without food, gas or electricity to provide for her and her three children. We agreed to send her and her family £100 so she could buy in some food for her and the children and top up her energy meters. In the meantime our agents are helping her resolve the mistake with her benefits claim.
May 9, 2018
Our case this time is a young mother of a 10 month old toddler, who has recently found herself single. She was on her former partner's claim for benefits and as a result is currently without any income. She has submitted a claim in her own name, however this will take some time before it comes into payment. She was hoping to return to work, but sadly the depression and anxiety keeps her a prisoner in her own home, and even if she found suitable employment the costs of childcare as well as all her other outgoings would make that prohibitive. We agreed we would send her £100 to tide her over until her payments could be received.
Mar 27, 2018
The request for help came for a single mum with a young son and a toddler. They live in a two bedroomed house, so the children share a room. She has been struggling to get some things for the house, and are without a stair carpet and furniture for the children's room. She recently fell down the stairs herself and is now concerned that the children might also fall down the stairs. Existing on benefits means she is unable to save to buy anything she needs, not even secondhand. We agreed to send across £150 so she could purchase what she needs herself.
Mar 14, 2018
Our agents contacted us today about a single mum of two children, who has severe mental health problems. She has been living almost on fresh air and has run out of the tiny amount of money she has to live on, leaving her without gas, electric, food and nappies. We agreed to help her out by sending over £150 to tide her over until her next payment is due. Our agents feel at such a stressful time, some help from us might be the boost she so desperately needs.
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.