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Bradford Council announces winter support package for struggling households

25 Nov 2021,

 

Households facing financial hardship this winter can benefit from a council-led support package.

Bradford Council has been allocated almost £5.7m from the Government’s Household Support Fund (HSF) to help residents who would otherwise struggle to buy food, keep their home warm, pay essential utility bills or meet other essential living costs through winter.

Part of the money was used to provide food vouchers to low-income families with school-age children during the October half-term. Around 26,000 children were supported by that scheme.

With energy costs rising, the council has chosen to spend almost half of the funding on giving households on the lowest incomes a £50 contribution to their utility bills this winter. Payments will be made to households in receipt of Council Tax Reduction. People do not need to apply for the payment, it will be sent automatically to those who are eligible. The money will be paid in two £25 instalments, the first in December and the second in February. Around 46,000 households are set to benefit from this help with energy costs.

Another large portion of the funding is focussed on helping children and families who may be struggling for food. Money is being allocated to schools, food banks and voluntary and community groups so they can support their local communities.

Assistance will be available for low-income households who need essential items such as a cooker or fridge. Support will also be directed towards care leavers and carers in need.

Leader of Bradford Council, Councillor Susan Hinchcliffe, said: “Sadly, we know that this winter is likely to be the toughest ever for many of our residents due to the rise in the cost of living, the ongoing economic impact of the pandemic and the Government’s £20 a week cut to Universal Credit. The Universal Credit cut alone means a loss to families in Bradford of £67 million this year. We’ve thought long and hard about how to use the £5.7 million from Government to help those who are struggling. By working closely with our schools and the many excellent VCS organisations we have across the district we will make sure this money reaches those who need it the most.”

More details on support with household costs through winter can be found on the council website

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