Bolton will benefit from government funding of £2.8million, distributed by the Department for Work and Pensions, as the council launches a new campaign to help residents with the cost of living this winter.
Bolton Council has always offered a wide variety of support services to all residents struggling with their finances, but as prices rise more and more people are being affected and finding it harder to make ends meet .
A new website has just been launched to make it easier to find available help with debt, money and benefits, housing assistance, food and energy, jobs and skills, health and welfare , as well as business support.
£2.8 million for the Household Support Fund is also available until March 31, 2022, to help those most in need with energy and water bills and a wide range of everyday essentials .
All residents can apply for assistance, including those not receiving benefits and anyone who has not already received cost of living assistance.
Bolton Council will provide a range of help and advice, supported by partner organizations across the borough, including:
- Half-term supermarket vouchers worth £15 for each child in households of families eligible for free school meals
- emergency assistance with food parcels, gas and electricity payments, travel expenses and access to essential household items such as cookers, fridge-freezers and washing machines
- an additional £200,000 for Bolton’s Fund, which enables more local organizations to provide essentials to the cost of living in the local community
- creating warm spaces in local areas that provide comfortable places for residents to escape the cold and meet, chat and get help from specialists
- £100,000 emergency funding to help those in dire need with housing costs
The cost of living campaign is promoted with the support of all partner organisations, encouraging people to visit bolton.gov.uk/costofliving.
Deputy Head of Bolton Council, Cllr Hilary Fairclough said:
“We know that many people in Bolton are concerned about the rising cost of energy and other essentials as the winter months approach.
“The new website is a simple and straightforward guide to the help and support available and I urge everyone to visit it.
“The website will be updated regularly as more support, advice and information becomes available.”
The council’s website also contains links to partner organizations and the dedicated government page www.gov.uk/helpforhouseholds.
This provides help with; energy bills and energy price guarantees; cost-of-living payments for people receiving means-tested benefits; pensioner cost of living payments and winter fuel payments; disability payments for the cost of living; low-cost internet and home phone plans; water company hardship programs; assistance with childcare costs; housing aid and employment aid, tax relief and claims for reimbursement of professional expenses.
Walk-in counseling sessions for all Bolton residents have also been held to help the public find out more about the support available.
These will take place at Albert Hall of Bolton from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Saturday 5 and Wednesday 9 November.
Local organizations will be on hand to offer advice and guidance on ways to get food, fuel and money moving, including the Bolton Money Advice Service at Home and UCAN Centres, the Skills Service Bolton Monetary Fund, as well as many other charities and support agencies.
They will offer advice on budgeting and energy, advice on next steps for people struggling financially and there will be raffle prizes and free accessories to help people save money in their house.
Bolton’s charity Urban Outreach will also be offering slow cooker demonstrations throughout the event, showing you how to cook on a budget.
The first hour of each day is reserved for people who need a quieter time during the event, for example, people with autism, learning disabilities or sensory and communication disabilities who wish to attend with their family.
Organizers also want to learn more about how the cost of living affects communities in Bolton, including the challenges they face, the things they need to do to make ends meet and the extra support they have. really need.
As part of the research, event attendees will be asked to provide feedback, and a short survey will be posted online for those who were unable to attend to provide feedback, which will help shape future support.
For more general help, visit www.bolton.gov.uk/costofliving.