People facing an emergency can get help from the Sandwell Local Welfare Provision. The council can award residents in a crisis or some form of hardship with a grant, and the aid can help families resettle or it can go towards the payment of household expenses.
There are different types of support that can be awarded, and it includes emergency, responsive, and planned. Each will offer their own forms of assistance to the disadvantaged, and the council can provide more information on the scheme and what can be offered from it.
Grants from the Local Welfare Provision
The aim of the scheme is to help the vulnerable and residents with no other options available to them, including friends or family. But there will not be cash provided though, but rather vouchers or grants will be awarded as a form of support, and any aid is at the discretion of the Sandwell council. The authorities are not under any obligation to provide a resident with help, and all resources are also limited.
Welfare can also address short term needs, such as for food or help for heating bill arrears for someone facing a disconnection. There is also aid for people that require assistance to either maintain their independence within the community or resettle, and in these cases the council can provide bedding, furniture, white goods, and similar items to the household. The assistance is also aimed at helping keep families together and provide stability, and this also involves stopping homelessness. There is also a priority for older people as well as survivors of domestic violence, as well as others in special circumstances.
The Local Welfare Provision is for vulnerable that are threatened by a hardship or exceptional circumstance, but beneficiaries will also be provided with ongoing support and free advice from the Sandwell council, and this will be aimed at reducing poverty as well as tackling inequality. In some cases, partners such as CAB or StepChange provide this advice.
The specialists will help Sandwell residents apply for other available resources for their needs, and this may include government aid or DWP programmes. There will be applications submitted for any other housing benefits or entitlements that the applicant may be available to receive from these government agencies. Linkage will be provided to the most appropriate resource for their bills and ongoing needs.
Vouchers from welfare is combined with other council and charity support. It is often combined with the Supporting People programme, Discretionary Housing Payments for rent arrears, and more. The council will take a holistic approach in addressing poverty in the Sandwell Borough region, so many schemes and programmes may be provided.
Responsive Support is a form of aid that takes time to apply to, and the Local Welfare Assistance scheme can coordinate this. Examples may be applications to Sec 17 for children, Discretionary Housing Payments for rent, or job training.
Emergency assistance from welfare can be provided in a few days, and this is for people local to the Borough of Sandwell that are out of all other options. Awards will be for furniture, travel passes, clothing, and energy bills, among other needs. Another common award from the scheme is a voucher for a charity food bank. Either a grant or pre-paid card is usually provided.
Planned Support is ongoing, and this will be advice for tenants to sustain their accommodations and address other challenges. This may also include furniture from recycling centres as well as other household goods.
Welfare application sites in Sandwell
There are several council offices in Sandwell that people can turn to for more information or applications. Individuals can apply using internet access points, or stop by a local centre that is enar their home or flat.
- Oldbury residents can apply for welfare at Sandwell Council House, Freeth Street, Oldbury.
- Rowley Regis Local Centre has an address of Payne Street, Blackheath, B65 0DH.
- Smethwick district centre is at the local Council House. This is located at High Street, Smethwick, B66 3NT.
- Local Centre of Tipton is at High Street, Princes End, Tipton, DY4 9JB.
- Wednesday Local Centre – Town Hall, Holyhead Road, Wednesbury, WS10 7DF. Residents of Leabrook, Golf Links, Wednesbury, Woods Mesty and Friar Park need to contact this office.
- West Bromwich – Applications for the local Welfare Provision are processed at Court House, High Street, West Bromwich, B70 8LU. The towns of Black Lake, Hamstead, West Bromwich, Greets Green, Tantany,, Stone Cross, Yew Tree, and Great Barr are supported.