This is an easy read blog post about some of our recent work.
One of our advocates also volunteers at St Germaine’s church. While she was there, she heard about Household support grants. Each grant was worth £150.
She realised this would give really important help for our citizens. She shared the information with other advocates at CASBA. The advocates told the citizens they work with about it.
Only one person knew about it! CASBA advocates immediately started filling in forms with citizens, so they could apply for these grants. Sometimes they did it over phone and sometimes face to face.
In total, our staff completed over 35 forms with our citizens. It helped people who were in debt because of high fuel bills. They could replace essential items like cookers and microwaves. They were delighted to get this unexpected help.
Suddenly, a friend called one of our advocates to say the grants were closing the next day! It was her day off, but she decided it was important to spend a couple of hours ringing people and making herself available in the evening to get forms filled in before the deadline. Our citizens phoned each other so they were ready and knew what information was needed. That was really good because it made it much quicker!
Not everyone who needed this help got an application in on time.
There was very little communication about when they opened or closed. More support is needed for citizens struggling with cost of living increases.
CASBA campaigned to stop the government taking away £20 a week from the most vulnerable citizens. We will continue campaigning for a fairer system. p.s. We have heard that the grant applications are now reopening, which is good, but we don't know for how long.