Vouchers for paying bills as well as free items from the Thurrock Council ELF funds are part of the council’s local welfare scheme. There will not be cash given to claimants, but rather the welfare scheme gives grants or vouchers to pay bills, free items for a home, food, and other aid. Not of the aid is from the AllPay card, which helps pay the bills.
The council will usually give an AllPay card that is loaded up with assistance, and this is similar to a Visa pre-paid card. The card can then be used to help the family either pay for their bills, such as fuel, or the AllPay card can be used to obtain goods, including clothing or food. Most of the items are given directly to the claimant by partners, including furniture centres, charities, and other agencies.
Welfare schemes are only available to Thurrock residents at most one time every 12 months. Funds are limited, and assistance is first come-served. The Benefits Management Team will assess all applications, and they will determine if an appeal can be approved or not. However, ELF is meant for short term, emergency assistance and not long term help.
Types of assistance from ELF welfare scheme
The council will divide the assistance into various forms. This ranges from financial aid (mostly for paying heat or fuel bills) to free goods, including food, clothes, white goods, appliances, furniture, and more. All of the material goods from the Essential Living Fund are time based, meaning claimants need to pick up the items in a short period of time. Generally, 2 weeks is the allotted timeframe for doing so. Also, delivery of some larger goods, such as furniture, will be made for free.
Food assistance is offered from the Thurrock Essential Living Fund. This can be provided in 1 of 2 ways. The first will be a free voucher for using at the local supermarket, and that is in the form of an AllPay car. In addition, the council partners with the Trussell Trust churches to also provide free emergency parcels of groceries.
Free furniture and White Goods are provided from welfare too. This can be a couch, bed, table, kitchen supplies, fridge, and many other items. Welfare generally provides furniture and other items for people looking to settle in Thurrock. Or it can be items for people who are leaving care, such as hospital or a hostel. These goods can also be delivered, and the number is 0300 7900124.
Gas, utility, and heating bills can be paid use using the Thurrock council AllPay card. It will top up the meter so that the power can stay home on for longer in the home or flat. A credit will be given on the card, and the funds will help pay the utility bill for a period of time. This gives the claimant more time to find other energy bill help from their provider.
Clothing, including shoes and winter gear, is available too. Vouchers will be used to pay for these goods. The council will also offer this in partnership with furniture recycling centres, re-use stores in Thurrock and other charities. All of the items passed out will be gently used and not new.
Applying for financial help and goods from Thurrock Essential Living Fund
The aim of the local welfare scheme is to help the vulnerable, families on a low income or government benefits, singe mums or dads and others who are struggling. ELF vouchers from the council or emergency financial aid on the pre-paid cards may assist people leaving a hostel or hospital; residents under exceptional financial pressure; the disabled; young people; those recovering from a disaster and others. The council benefit manager will assess each application on a one-off basis to determine eligibility. To apply for ELF welfare, it can be done in person at the counter or online at https://www.thurrock.gov.uk/contact