Dundee City Council announces £886,000 financial support for winter period
Hundreds of thousands of pounds of additional funding is being made available to help people struggling financially in Dundee this winter.
Dundee City Council has revealed a range of plans over the coming months to support residents’ wellbeing by preventing and responding to financial insecurity.
Flexible funding of £886,000 has been allocated until March 2022, and is on top of £1.8m of supports already in place this financial year to support the most vulnerable in Dundee during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Councillor John Alexander, leader of the city council, said: “We know there are people out there who are really struggling. You only have to look at the recent launch of the second Fuel Well Dundee scheme to see there are thousands finding it difficult to pay for essentials such as lighting and heating.
“Increasing bills for utilities and the rising cost of living generally is only one aspect of the many concurrent pressures impacting on people, alongside the loss of key pandemic supports such as the Universal Credit uplift and furlough scheme.
“It’s a perfect storm which is causing misery and anxiety for households across the city, impacting on young and old, and this support will help to alleviate that.”
The funding includes an additional £300,000 for the Fuel Well Dundee scheme, which recently closed a second round after receiving 4000 applications from households for help towards winter fuel costs.
In addition to this, targeted fuel support totalling just over £300,000 will be provided to vulnerable older people across the city, with one-off payments going to thousands of households in receipt of Council Tax Reduction.
An additional £170,000 will be allocated to the Scottish Welfare Fund to support an increase in local applications and meet identified needs such as adult winter clothing.
Other funding includes discretionary support for families which home school their children and a £40,000 allocation to Funeral Link to assist vulnerable families who suffer bereavement and develop a service for those who are going through traumatic loss.
A £50,000 grant will allow the Mission Christmas Toy Appeal to give 1000 gifts to children and young people who might otherwise go without this festive period.
Councillor Alexander continued: “This is a time of year that people should look forward to, but sadly too many in our communities dread it.
“No child should wake up on Christmas Day to find they’ve no gifts to open. No-one should have to sit in a freezing home as temperatures plummet. And no-one should ever be worried about money when they are going through the loss of a loved one.
“We are working hard to co-ordinate the many different sources of support and financial backing available to us to make sure that the most effective and efficient help possible is available during these difficult times.
“I’m confident that this additional package of support will make a real difference to people’s lives this winter, and would encourage anyone who needs help to ask for it.”