The Newham council offers an emergency scheme for the vulnerable as well as the low income facing a crisis. Any assistance is provided in the form of a loan, and the authorities will determine what type of expenses can be paid for using the funds from the council. However, in the past, the Community and Crisis Support scheme has been used to provide vouchers to pay for energy costs or housing needs, ranging from furniture to free food.
While the council will issue a loan, it will not be in the form of cash. Instead a voucher is used, and the council will only allocate the funds for paying certain expenses. If an individual tries to use the scheme for other bills that are not authorised by the council, then the voucher will not even work. So there are criteria in place that are also enforced by the Newham council.
Aim of loans from Community and Crisis Support
The scheme was created to be a safety net for families on a low income that are in a crisis and that have no other options available. Any loans from the welfare programme will be limited to certain expenses for addressing a health or safety crisis.
As an example of what types of assistance the council has provided in the past, they have issued vouchers that some can use to obtain groceries from either a food bank or a local supermarket. This is normally for families faced with poverty.
During the winter, Newham Crisis Support can be used for fuel costs. Vulnerable residents in the borough, such as older people, are often threatened by lack of heat. The loans can be used to top off a meter. Support will pay for a number of other basic living expenses or bills as well.
Also, if someone is in danger of losing their home, or if they need to resettle, then council funds can be used for furniture, security deposits costs, or connection fees for utilities. White goods as well as bedding may also be provided. If someone needs help with rent arrears, the Newham council will help that tenant with applications to DHP.
So the above are the main uses of the loans. The aim is to help vulnerable stay in the community or prevent a safety issue. However the council will review each application based on merit, and they can decide to use welfare for other bills if it will reduce exceptional pressure on families.
When applying for Community and Crisis Support loans, individuals need to know it is a last resort. The council will need proof of income and need. Any vouchers are also only for people local to Newham, on a very low income or benefits, and are age 16. There are no guarantees to receiving support and if an award is not issued, then residents can’t appeal the decision of the council.
If an application for welfare has been denied, then another option is the MoneyWorks programme. This is another service from the council that is run in partnership with the local credit unions. Families can access funds at a low interest rate instead of using a payday lender, so this provides them the money they need and also helps people save on interest costs. More on Newham Borough MoneyWorks loans.
When the voucher is issued, it will be for certain goods. There will be a value to it though. No mater the amount, whether it is £50 or £100, the money will need to be repaid. While the council will not charge interest, it is still provided as a loan to the resident.
For more information on the scheme, the Newham Council can be called at 0203 373 1180. An assessment will be done by the council and any funds will be issued at their discretion based on the results of that.