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Cost of living help

Monday 20 February 2023

Redbridge Council has launched a campaign to support local people with advice, information, and practical help during the cost-of-living crisis.

Called ‘Helping you in tough times’, the comprehensive website provides access to an extensive network of support and information from the council, community organisations and other partners.

Redbridge Council has already stepped-up support to help local people in various ways, from making direct financial awards with household costs to funding services that provide crisis support, like food banks, free meals for children during school holidays and warm packs for pensioners.

Residents will find useful information and advice to manage financially this winter and protect their wellbeing, with expert tips on keeping warm and well, healthy eating, low and no cost exercising, jobs and training, and positive mental wellbeing.

Cllr Jas Athwal, Leader of Redbridge Council, said: “We know that times are tough right now for families across our borough, and the rising cost of living is affecting everybody in different ways. We’re here to help and support local people to navigate these incredibly challenging times.

“Through our Household Support Fund, our council has made over 77,000 financial awards for food, energy, household bills, kitchen equipment and other essentials, like warm clothing, blankets and washing products for people in crisis, and we have set aside further funds to carry on providing this help.

“We have identified £750,000 in unclaimed benefits, provided school free meals during holidays to ensure no child goes hungry, awarded £700,000 in funding to food banks to continue their valuable work, and sent 5,000 ‘warm packs’ to low-income pensioners to help them with their energy bills this winter.”

Cllr Kam Rai, Deputy Leader of Redbridge Council, and Cabinet Member for Finance, Leisure, and Culture said: “We’ve now launched a website to help local people through this crisis, providing access to an extensive network of services, information, and advice, in partnership with the local community. Local people can find out about help with their income, their bills, their housing costs, and information about keeping mentally well, fit, and healthy.

“It works on all devices, and we’ll update it continually with new advice, support, and information so our neighbours across Redbridge can trust it as their main source of advice. Please share the website with your family, friends and neighbours.

“Redbridge Council is stepping up support in every way to help local people get through these challenging times. We will continue to press our case to Government to ensure that the borough gets the funding it deserves and no one gets left behind.”

The cost-of-living website has been built, making it quick and easy to navigate. It has a short film narrated by Cllr Athwal, which sets out how the council is responding to support local people through this crisis. Sections include:

Help with your income: Household Support Fund, Support with energy bills, community foodbanks and free school meals.

Help with bills: Universal credit report, benefits and benefits calculator, debt and money advice, and information on energy bills rebate.

Help with housing costs: Council tax support, discretionary housing payments, problems paying your rent or mortgage, and concerns about becoming homeless.

Help with your job and career: Work Redbridge, which offers support around job finding, job options, careers advice and tips around interviewing and CV development; and Redbridge Institute, which has lots of training and education options to improve your opportunities.

Community Living Rooms: A network of spaces where people can spend time in a warm place and enjoy facilities like free wi-fi.

Personal support: Help in other languages and support if you cannot use a computer or do not have access to one.

Visit the Cost of Living website