Crowthorne Parish Council

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Message Board Notice

Message Board

Monday, 12 December, 2022

Offering support to households most in need

Bracknell Forest Council is supporting our most vulnerable residents who are under increased financial pressure due to the rising cost of living.

The Department of Work and Pensions is providing funding through the Household Support Fund from October 2022 to April 2023. The Household Support Fund is dedicated to supporting those most in need, particularly in relation to food costs and essential bills.

The funding is being distributed in several ways:
  • cost of living vouchers for households in receipt of free school meals
  • supermarket vouchers for low income households
  • funding for local foodbanks
  • application-based support through the Local Welfare Scheme
Bracknell Forest school pupils who are in receipt of free school meals will automatically receive a supermarket voucher over the coming weeks, before Christmas. Low income households who receive Council Tax Support or housing benefit, but were not entitled to the recent £650 cost of living payment, will also be posted a voucher before Christmas. However, if residents do not automatically qualify for this and need help with the cost of food or energy, they can apply directly through our Local Welfare Scheme.

Cllr Dr Gareth Barnard, executive member for children, young people and learning, said:

“To extend the support we can offer to our residents, the Local Welfare Scheme has been enhanced to help those who are unable to meet the costs of everyday essentials, to apply for further support. This includes helping with energy or food costs, and is particularly for those who do not automatically qualify for other cost of living support schemes.

“Eligible residents can apply through the main Local Welfare Scheme application route, or through the winter family cost of living voucher scheme. I encourage anyone who is struggling at the moment to please apply for support.”

Residents can apply through two routes:
  • Main Local Welfare Scheme - this is based on our existing assessment criteria and will include a financial assessment of your income and assets. More information is available on our Local Welfare Scheme webpage.

  • Winter family cost of living voucher scheme - this is for low income families not eligible for the school distributed vouchers. More information on eligibility and how to apply is on our Household Support Fund webpage.
For more information, advice and the range of local and national support available, please visit our Cost of Living webpages.

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