The Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) has provided local government with a further £421m of Household Support funding, nationally, for the period April - September 2022.
The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead's allocation of funding for this period is £587,905.21. As with other funding provided, the DWP have issued guidance with regard to how they expect this funding to be used to assist local residents, but there is some discretion for authorities who must create their own schemes, taking the Government guidance into account.
Allocation and administration of funding
Unlike previously, the DWP advise that at least one third of this allocation of funding must be used to assist pensioners.
One third must be used to assist families with children and the remaining third those that the authority considers maybe genuinely in need of support, particularly if they are unable to increase their income e.g. by starting work or increasing their work.
At the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead, the Household Support Fund has previously been administered by the co-owned community interest company, Achieving for Children (AfC), who provide social services for children within the Borough. This remains the case with this latest extension to the Fund.
AfC have already started to administer the one third of funding to families with children by issuing food vouchers for those eligible for free school meals to use during school holidays.
Proposals for the remaining funds
Proposals for the remaining funds are still being finalised but are likely to include:
- Working with colleagues in the RBWM Housing team to determine whether assistance may be provided for rent arrears where this is necessary in order to secure a sustainable tenancy. Please note this does not mean assistance with rent arrears for those already in a secure tenancy.
- Working with colleagues in the RBWM Council Tax team to provide assistance to Pensioners already in receipt of Council Tax Reduction.
AfC, in conjunction with RBWM, will look to make automatic awards wherever possible and will not require eligible residents to make an application unless specifically invited.
Further updates will be provided here when possible. Please do not contact either RBWM or AfC for any further information at this time.
(Updated: Thursday 7 July 2022)