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Over 25,000 vulnerable households have been supported by second phase of cost-of-living funding

11 October 2022

Neat stacks of one pound coins

Over 25,000 vulnerable households in West Northants have already received support from the second phase of the Government’s Household Support Fund (HSF) to help with the ongoing cost of living crisis.

Between July and September 2022, West Northamptonshire Council (WNC) issued 11,296 school meal vouchers, totalling £1.4million, to parents covering the six-week summer break.

Over 10,000 of these vouchers were activated and used by the end of the school holidays resulting in an activation rate of almost 90% - the best recorded result yet for this scheme locally.

The Council has just announced that further funding will be allocated for school meal vouchers for the upcoming October half term break.

In addition to the school vouchers, 6,251 Post Office cash vouchers for the amount of £100 were issued to residents who were in receipt of Pension Credit. Where residents were unable to get to a Post Office branch, supermarket vouchers were provided instead.

An additional 1,030 vouchers for the amount of £100 were issued to residents who receive Pension Credit and are also registered as disabled.

Households experiencing severe food and energy poverty also received a share of the HSF money. WNC and Northamptonshire Community Foundation (NCF) worked with over 30 voluntary agencies, local charities and support groups to reach out to known vulnerable households, the homeless and those using food banks regularly.

A total of 7,464 vouchers were issued by these voluntary organisations, with almost half of the recipients being households with children and a large proportion of recipients being single persons.

A donation of £20,000 has also been made to local food banks and separate donation to Age UK to support the elderly throughout the winter months.

Cllr Matt Golby, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health, said:

“We recognise that we are living in extremely challenging times and the cost-of-living situation is causing severe financial difficulties for many households in the county.

“The Household Support Fund has been a real lifeline for so many people in West Northants - especially those who are struggling to pay household bills or buy food, and I am pleased it has been extended once again so that we can help even more residents.

“There has been an immense collective response from partners, voluntary organisations, community groups and residents who have supported the most vulnerable individuals in our communities at a time when they have needed it the most. The engagement and dedication from everyone involved has been truly inspiring and I would like to thank everyone who has pulled together to support their local communities and help those in need.

“We are continuing to look at the best options for ensuring that the next phase of this funding goes to those in our community who need the support most and once finalised, will ensure residents know how to access this extra support.”

For more information on the full range of support available, visit Cost of Living Support.

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