In the past year we have helped our customers receive over £3.25million of extra income, with around a third of this in the form of additional Housing Benefit or Discretionary Housing Payments.
Our Financial Inclusion team has worked on over 1,000 cases in the past 12 months, ensuring that our customers in Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Northamptonshire are receiving the money they are entitled to.
This help has ranged from assisting with budgeting and debt advice, navigating the sometimes complicated benefits system, attending court to help reinstate awards and making sure they are on the best tariffs for their utilities.
Deborah Stuart, Director of Independent Living and Better Lives, said: “We’re committed to supporting our customers in improving their quality of life and it’s not all about the financial side of things. The teams have been securing food parcels, attending tribunal hearings to advocate for customers and supporting them to access appropriate financial products.
“Some customers struggle with changes to the benefits system, as they can be complex and difficult to understand, so professional support can make a real difference.”
Flitwick customer Mrs Potter (pictured) received support from the team to help with a PIP application and said: “I was so pleased when I was granted the daily living component of PIP; it was such a relief. It has made such a difference to my life as I now have more money for bills and have an emergency pot of money to help should something unexpected happen.
“The help I got from Grand Union was brilliant. I honestly don’t know if I’d have got PIP without them.”