Havering Welfare Benefits Adviser Lorraine Moss today writes in the Havering Daily.
Firstly, I would like to wish everyone a happy new year. Sadly, we are starting the year in another national lockdown which will cause financial hardship for many people. Additionally, the temperature has really dropped and many people will be struggling to pay their energy bills.
In December 2020, The Government launched The Covid Winter Grant Scheme. This is to support those most in need across England with the cost of food, energy, water bills and other essentials.
This funding has been allocated to local councils across the country.
In Havering, vulnerable families can claim up to £170.00 per month for help to help with heating and other essential utility bills. This is subject to an assessment.
Low income families include those receiving welfare benefits, or households with children, that have an overall income of less than £500 per week.
Individuals or smaller households with low incomes (less than £350.00 per week for individuals and couples) can also claim £100.00 pcm. Again, this would be subject to an assessment.
Under this scheme parents can also apply for help for free school meals during holiday times. I am not sure whether they will widen the criteria now that schools are now only open for a limited amount of children and the majority are now at home and using online learning.
To apply, please see Helping hand for most vulnerable this winter | The London Borough Of Havering if you have problems with the online form, you can call Havering Council on 01708 434343.