Resident in need of support spotted by Welfare Benefits Officer

One of our residents has received financial support and a payment from our Breathing Space fund, which we set up to provide short-term help for residents who are struggling to make ends meet due to the rising costs of food and household bills. Here’s Chris’s story. 

Chris came to our Welfare Benefit Officer’s attention when they were meeting with other residents and spotted that Chris seemed isolated.  

They learnt while talking with him that Chris was looking after his partner, who was sadly receiving end of life care, and that he was also struggling with his bills and other financial commitments.  

Our Welfare Benefit Officer then spent time with Chris, reviewing his outstanding bills, and identified a mistake with Chris’s Council Tax, something Chris had not previously spotted.  

Breathing space

Chris was also supported to make an application to our Breathing Space Fund, one of two funding pots set aside to provide financial support to residents in response to the cost-of-living crisis.  

The funds can be used to help deal with the rising costs of food, fuel, rent and other household bills, offering a short-term solution and some much-needed ‘breathing space.’  

Chris was successful in his application for £300, which helped him to pay off his electricity debt and most of his water bill. His Council Tax was also lowered thanks to our intervention, and the budget that was put together is being used by Chris to better manage his finances.  

With our help, Chris also applied for a Universal Credit payment and Carer’s Payment, helping to boost his income further. 

Extra support

Despite this being an emotionally challenging time for Chris, he felt that a weight had been lifted, giving him a fresh start and helping him get to a better position to manage his bills moving forward. This allowed him to focus on caring for and spending time with his partner.  

Additionally, Chris is now getting wider carer support from local agencies, increasing his support network and leaving him less isolated.  

If you would like to know more about our Breathing Space Fund and how to make an application, visit: https://mountgreen.org.uk/breathing-space-fund/