Advice team is on the money
Queens Cross Housing Association’s six strong financial inclusion team has helped tenants gain almost £1 million in benefits.
The majority of work delivered by the team involves appealing benefit decisions made by bodies such as Department of Work and Pensions, Glasgow City Council and Scottish Social Security. With the addition of an Energy Advisor to the team in October people struggling with their household energy bills can access advice and financial support too.
“Putting more money in people’s pockets is the easiest way to reduce poverty in our communities. By helping people claim what they are entitled to, we are freeing them up to look at new opportunities to move their lives on, without the worry of not having enough money to pay bills,” said Queens Cross chief executive, Shona Stephen.
"This has been particularly important for people struggling to cope during the Covid-19 lockdown."
Over the past year the team has helped 175 people successfully access £922k of benefits they were entitled to but weren’t getting. In addition over £20,000 was paid to tenants to help with energy costs through the Scottish Governments’ Social Housing Fuel Support Fund.
"With fuel poverty being a real challenge and climate change action needed by everyone, we were delighted to introduce a new energy advice service over the past year as part of the team to help local people keep their energy costs and emissions down," added Stephen.
It is expected demand for services will increase sharply as lockdown eases and furlough payments stop in September.
The service is confidential and anyone looking for help can make an appointment by calling the association.