Emergency funding of £20,000 to help Stockbridge Village residents facing hardship in the wake of the cost-of-living crisis will provide people with essentials like blankets and warm clothing, food and wellbeing support.
Progressive local landlord, ForHousing, has been awarded an additional £10,000 of funding from Knowsley Council’s Knowsley Better Together Hardship Fund to offer practical items, advice and support. The housing association has committed to match the funding, bringing the package of support to £20,000.
The funding extends an ongoing partnership between the housing association and the council which has been providing emergency support to the community since the first COVID-19 lockdown.
To date this has included providing £30,000 of food and fuel vouchers, furniture vouchers worth £6,000 that have helped 30 families to make their house a home and support to manage rising household bills and maximise income from trained, friendly team members going out into the community.
The new funding will cover the costs of practical support like free winter warm packs containing warm clothing and blankets, support to pay for school uniforms, and purchasing air fryers and slow cookers which are cheaper to run than an oven.
A proportion of the funding has been allocated to meet increasing demand at community hot food cafes delivered by Craigwayz and Phoenix Community groups at the Craigs Community Centre. The cafes welcome those on low incomes and older people in the area, providing them with a nutritious hot meal.
Counselling for residents whose mental well-being is being impacted by the stress of rising costs will also be on offer.
“As we approach winter, we know that more people in Stockbridge Village will be pushed from just about surviving into crisis mode.
“Everything we do is focused on improving people’s lives, so we are committed to providing as much support as possible to those who are being affected by the rising cost of living.
“Tenants are telling us that they are worried about paying their bills, choosing between heating and eating and the impact on their families and we want to do all we can to help.
“We would like to thank the council for providing the necessary funding so that we can offer this vital support and we are pleased to be able to match this to help even more individuals and families in Stockbridge Village.”Martyn Hague, Executive Director of Customer at ForHousing
“We are doing all that we can to support our communities through what we know will be a challenging few months.
We are working closely with our partners, such as ForHousing, to help to deliver that support – they work closely with residents in our communities and are able to tailor support to specific needs. We have invested just over £4m in our Knowsley Better Together Hardship Fund, ensuring residents have access to essentials such as food and heating and we will continue to ensure our residents have the support they need, when they need it.”Cllr Jayne Aston, Cabinet Member for Resources
For more information about how to access support please visit www.knowsleynews.co.uk/cost-of-living-support