Universal Credit and childhood cancer

We were asked to help a single mum of three, one child at school, the other two are twins, 8 months old. She has had her Universal Credits payments stopped while a residency test is carried out. She has been without any money for a week and looks to be waiting a further two weeks before an answer even. She has been issued with a foodbank voucher as she and the children are without food or money to top up their energy meters. We sent the family £100 to help them out.

A mother of three children who suffers from extreme mental health conditions, so much so that her children are currently in care with family elsewhere. She is in the process of trying to get the children moved back to live with her but her ESA payments do not stretch to cover the cost of going to collect them, then to do something with the children once they are with her. If she misses a visit with them then this goes against her case in court, so she is desperate to maintain regular contact. We sent over a small amount to assist her.

A young man who has left his foster care and is living independently is struggling to cope. Childhood cancer and its treatment have left him with conditions that as an adult compromises his ability to work. He was working up until June this year but had to give up. Since then he has been without income of any kind and has fallen behind with his rent, and has no hot water as he can’t pay his bills. His foster mum has come forward and is trying to help him, and ideally wants him to return to live with her, but he wants to try to live on his own. In the meantime, our agents are going to assist him with applying for Universal Credit which will also help him with his rent. We agreed to send some money across so he could buy some food and top up his energy meters.

A single mother of three children, 10, 7 years, and 7 months old has fallen behind with her rent. She was confused with the changeover to Universal Credit, not realising that the money for the rent was paid to her and she needed to pay that on to her landlord herself (previously housing benefit was paid directly to the landlord and still is in some cases.) She was threatened with eviction and only prevented that happening by borrowing £500 from a money lender. She is now being threatened by her landlord again and is also trying to feed and clothe her children as well as pay back the moneylender on £600 Universal Credit per month. We agreed to send her some money so she could at least do a decent shop for food, so that would be one less worry for her.

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