As the weather gets colder, it is becoming difficult for some to stay on top of rising energy costs, so this week we have seen a number of cases come to us where Universal Credit hasn’t been able to stretch to topping up the energy meters. It just takes an unexpected expense and suddenly it’s a choice between do you top up the energy meter and stay warm or use the money to buy food? The requests for help have been for small amounts, £20 here and £35 there, for some food and topping up the gas or electricity.
We have helped one person with some money towards getting them somewhere safe and off the streets for a few months where she can be supported into accommodation of her own. It’s the little things, like being able to offer a tiny amount for someone who has lived street homeless for years, to be able to purchase a tiny tabletop cooker, so he can prepare himself a hot meal.