The Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead is today (9 May) launching a new campaign along with community partners to raise awareness of the support that can help those struggling to cope with the rising cost of living.
Households across the UK are seeing a squeeze on incomes and an increase in the cost of basic essentials due to a combination of factors, including the increase in the energy cap, the National Insurance rise, higher inflation and the impacts of the Ukraine war.
While the Royal Borough is overall a relatively prosperous place, there are households on low incomes and in fuel poverty, who are most vulnerable to extra cost pressures, especially around food and fuel, and the numbers struggling are likely to increase.
As part of our response, the council and its partners are highlighting the local and national support which, depending on individual circumstances, can help those in need to build their personal financial resilience and hopefully avoid the need for crisis support.
As part of the new campaign, ‘Here to Help’, the council has brought together support from the council and partners onto one dedicated webpage and is encouraging those struggling financially to visit www.RBWM.gov.uk/here-to-help
For those in need who don’t have online access, people can still call 01628 683800 to see what support might be available to them, or otherwise visit the webpage using the public-access computers available at our libraries.
Across multiple communications channels ‘Here to Help’ will highlight the support available and encourage anyone having to make difficult decisions around food, rent, heating or other essentials to check the webpage and contact their landlord and energy supplier around further help.
‘Here to Help’ will run with the support of key partners including social landlords Abri and Housing Solutions, and Voluntary and Community Sector partners, Foodshare Maidenhead, Windsor Foodshare, Driven Forward, The Baby Bank, The Spoore, Merry and Rixman Foundation, and Citizens Advice.
Councillor Andrew Johnson, the Council Leader and Cabinet Member for Growth and Opportunity, said: “We are proud to have one of the lowest Council Tax rates in England, which is helping to keep household bills down. However, we’re very aware the cost of living is rising and we want to ensure that everyone across our communities has the financial resilience to cope with the extra pressures, to maintain your tenancy, stay warm at home and feed your family.
“We know that things are tight financially for many people at the moment. So if you are struggling financially and having to make difficult decisions around food, rent, heating or other essentials, please seek help if you need it.
“We’re minded some people may be in need for the first time, and benefits and other financial support can be tricky to navigate, so bringing everything together and raising awareness under our ‘Here to Help’ campaign makes the support easier to explore.
“We want to make it clear that residents should not delay getting in contact – if you are struggling then please visit the dedicated webpage to see what might be available to you, reach out to us, or our key partners, before you reach the point of crisis.”