Winter support scheme still available for low-income families
Families struggling to heat their homes are being reminded that up to £200 financial support to pay their heating bills is still available. Staffordshire County Council is working with Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service and local charity Beat The Cold to deliver the Covid-19 winter grant scheme. In addition to the financial help, families will also be signposted to the Staffordshire Warmer Homes scheme which could see the installation of free gas central heating in their homes. Mark Sutton, Cabinet Member for Children and Young People at Staffordshire County Council said: “Covid-19 has presented us all with huge challenges and extra pressures, particularly for many of our more vulnerable families. “We know that many households, through no fault of their own are also finding it hard going and struggling with things like paying their heating bills which is why we launched our scheme. Hundreds of families have already benefited from the support but I want to remind families that there is still time to apply before it closes at the end of March 2021. “Through the scheme, we’re not only offering financial support, but also helping families find a long term affordable solution to heating their home. I would encourage anyone who thinks they might be eligible to get in touch with us and make an application.” Households in an emergency situation who do not have heating, or heating that is broken could also get portable heaters delivered and a winter warmth pack including hats, scarves, blankets and gloves. The support is available to residents who have low or no income or those claiming benefits. The money will be given to families as pre-paid meter credit or be paid directly to their energy provider to add credit to their account or to clear prior debt. The financial support is limited and will be allocated to eligible residents on a first come, first serve basis. Families can apply for the Covid-19 winter grant scheme at www.staffordshire.gov.uk/covidwintersupport.