Ms P is in her 40s. She is receiving treatment for cancer, has mobility issues due to lymphedema and also suffers with severe anxiety. She had a history of domestic violence from an ex-partner and is a temporary carer for her two grandchildren, who were removed from her daughter’s care.

She was in significant financial difficulty, with low income and bailiffs coming to her door – she had debts of over £1,600, a small amount of rent arrears, and a large recharge for front door replacement.

Social services expressed concerns about the poor condition of Ms P’s property, which led to the Neighbourhood Team referring her to us. Intensive Housing Management (IHM) support has now been in place for nine months.

What did we do?

  • Supported to have the property carpeted throughout, mould cleared from downstairs toilet, all rooms repainted, doors which had been damaged through domestic violence replaced by a charity, garden tidied by our in-house gardening services and kitchen floor replaced. We placed her on the list for a kitchen upgrade and provided a skip to clear clutter
  • Supported to get a new washing machine as the one she had was rented
  • Supported to apply for the Big Difference Scheme
  • Supported to dispute Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) reassessment, which was accepted with support from GP
  • Applied for Personal Independence Payment (PIP) which was accepted at high rate care
    and mobility. Severe Disability Premium was put into pay
  • Supported to engage with Beth Johnson Cancer Advocacy
  • Supported to have occupational therapy assessment

What did Ms P achieve?

  • Property condition is no longer an issue
  • Her income has increased significantly with a large backdate which meant she could clear all debts. She no longer has money worries or bailiffs coming to her door
  • Now attending regular appointments with the support of Beth Johnson
  • Now attending weekly social group for people battling cancer
  • Banister and grab rails fitted
  • Recharge cleared after finding historic evidence to show the door was broken due to domestic violence
  • Able to focus now solely on her health and wellbeing
  • Unfortunately, due to the domestic violence and the level of treatment she was having for the cancer, social services decided to take the children out of Ms P’s care. They are now placed with her sister which she is happy about as she is able to visit regularly

What did we prevent?

  • Disrepair – no involvement from Neighbourhood Team due to vast improvement in property condition
  • Debt – no further action from bailiffs
  • Unnecessary costs – no further issues with council tax due to full deduction
  • Mental health issues – no decrease in mental wellbeing due to Ms P receiving appropriate support

What financial outcomes did Ms P achieve?

  • Annual benefit increase of £10,553.40
  • Backdate of £1,217.70 which helped to clear rent arrears and debts
  • £300 saved on water bill (12 months Big Difference Scheme)
  • £15 per week saved on no longer renting appliances
  • £480 saved on carpets and washing machine via charitable funding grants

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