During the cost of living crisis, Ealing Council has expanded its eligibility criteria for support to give extra help to those who qualify – such as money towards buying food and essential items.
The council’s local welfare assistance team can be contacted online or on 020 8825 6237 if you are struggling financially. The team will help identify if you are eligible for financial assistance and also provide debt advice, budgeting and help with finding a job. You can check if you are able to claim for assistance and apply on the council’s website.
Residents can also ask for help with a rent deposit and/or rent in advance, moving costs, or help with their council tax. Discretionary housing payments can help with a rent shortfall and/or arrears of rent if someone is already getting housing benefit/universal credit (housing costs element).
Sanah, one of the council’s senior local welfare officers, said: “We’re seeing a marked increase in the number of applications for support as a result of the cost of living crisis. Last year, we had roughly 200 applications per month – this year it’s double that.
“Financial hardship can happen to anyone, even people on modest incomes are feeling the pinch. It can be something as simple as the cost of buying new school uniforms in September, or a broken cooker that can push people into hardship unexpectedly. A lot of people who are struggling might not know about what help might be available, so it’s worth checking whether they qualify.”
Text messages to pensioners – claim before 16 December
Some residents receiving Pension Credit will have received a text message reminding them to claim their Household Support Fund payment of £104 – if they have not already claimed it. The deadline to claim is 16 December 2022 – so they should not delay.
To claim, you will need the letter sent to you by Ealing Council in September 2022 to redeem your money from your local post office. A trusted friend or family member can do it on your behalf.