A new £500 million support scheme is being launched to help vulnerable households over winter, the government has announced.
The Household Suport Fund will be distributed by councils across England to assist the community through small grants to meet daily necessities like food, clothing and utilities.
What has the government said?
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) said the Barnett formula will apply in the usual way to additional funding in England, with the devolved administrations to receive up to £79 million of the £500 million.
The funding will be made available to local authorities in October.
Therese Coffey, Work and Pensions Secretary, said that over the last year the government has “helped millions of people provide for their families.”
In a statement, she explained: “Many are now back on their feet but we know that some may still need further support,
“Our targeted Household Support Fund is here to help those vulnerable households with essential costs as we push through the last stages of our recovery from the pandemic.”
Universal Credit cut looming
The £500 million fund comes as figures reveal record-breaking numbers of people are seeking support for their mental and financial well-being ahead of the widely opposed Universal Credit cut.
On Tuesday (28 September), charity Mental Health UK warned that removing the £20-a-week uplift will be a “catastrophic cut” that could cause people’s mental health to spiral.
The charity added that visitors to its online mental health and money advice service have almost doubled in a year, rising from 30,760 to 60,214 last month.
This article originally appeared on our sister site, NationalWorld.