Residents' Support Scheme
Tower Hamlets can provide essential crisis support to some of its most vulnerable residents through the new Residents’ Support Scheme. This service replaces the Crisis Grant from 10 December 2018. There is a strict eligibility criteria in place in order to reach the most in need at times of great difficulty.
What kind of support can you get?
The scheme is designed to support residents who are either in or at risk of being in crisis, are in need of immediate help and have no source of financial support available to them.
The Residents' Support Scheme will help with short term living costs such as credit food and gas/electric prepayment metres. It can also help in some circumstances with white goods and furniture. Cash will not usually be awarded, but a pay point voucher can be supplied to the applicant where necessary.
Vouchers will be awarded to enable residents to purchase the items that they require, such as furniture. If white goods, such as a washing machine or fridge are required, then these items will be purchased through the scheme and the delivery will be arranged with the resident directly to their home. Household goods will be paid by voucher, which will be received within five working days of the decision being made.
The scheme will also signpost residents to other sources of support that is available to ensure that they can get the maximum level of help. There may also be the opportunity for referral for advice/assistance with financial, debt and/or welfare benefits to try and address the resident’s long term needs.
Who does the scheme help?
Residents must be aged 16 years or over and must not be subject to any UK immigration control. The council has identified the following groups as a priority to support –
- those experiencing domestic abuse
- families with young children
- older people
- people with longer term illnesses
- people with disabilities
- people with mental health needs
- households with a pregnant person
What will not be awarded?
Not every application will be awarded. The scheme will not award:
- any application made that is felt to be ‘not an immediate need’ or where alternative means of support is available
- applications from those with sufficient income or savings
- clothing (except in exceptional circumstances where someone is fleeing their home e.g. flood, fire, domestic violence)
- minor structural repairs where these are the responsibility of the landlord or the owner.
- furniture and household items where living in private rented furnished accommodation or furnished temporary accommodation, where this is the responsibility of the landlord
- specialist disability equipment or adaptations, recliner chairs, wheelchairs and mobility scooters
- personal debts – we will refer to appropriate agencies for support.
- phone costs or associated expenses
How do you apply?
You can make your application to the scheme online at any time. You will need to provide information about:
- where you live
- who you live with
- your circumstances
- your income
- your health
- what help you are applying for
How long will it take for a decision to be made?
Decisions will be made for ‘cash awards’ applications within 24 hours and for household goods within five working days. Cash applications will be paid via pay point voucher and where the code will be sent by text message or email, which will be received within 24 hours of the decision being made.
Can I appeal a decision?
If an application is unsuccessful there is an opportunity to make an appeal. You will have 10 working days from the date of your decision letter to register your appeal. You can appeal by writing or emailing to:
Residents’ Support Scheme PO Box 352 Hartlepool TS24 4FH or firstname.lastname@example.org