Almost 26,000 Food Vouchers Delivered to Derbyshire Families
Written by Spire Radio on 7 January 2021
The first of two food voucher runs have been completed by Derbyshire County Council after receiving almost £2.2m from the Government’s Covid Winter Grant Scheme to support vulnerable families over the winter months. The second set of vouchers will be sent in February 2021 to cover the half term period.
Approximately £1.66m of the £2.2m will be spent of the provision of vouchers to families across the Christmas and February half-term breaks and approximately £0.42m being spent on vulnerable adults partially through voucher scheme for care-leavers and via Derbyshire Discretionary Fund. There is also additional funding for:
- the Derbyshire Healthy Homes Programme which will address, via referral, domestic infrastructure issues including boiler repair and heating system maintenance.
- an older adult hardship fund targeting over sixty five year olds via a grant to Age UK Derby and Derbyshire;
- a grant to Derbyshire Carers Association ensuring that funding reaches a wide range of vulnerable adults and families who are dealing with the additional pressures of caring for those with long term health conditions, chronic illness, disabilities and learning difficulties.
Derbyshire County Council Cabinet Member for Young People, Councillor Alex Dale said: “It’s been a challenge to set up the systems needed to get these food vouchers to the families that need it the most in such a short timeframe, but I’m really proud of the council teams working around the clock to get these vouchers out in such a short space of time.
“This has been a hard year for a lot of families and other members of our communities and throughout our development of this proposal, it has been our aim to make sure all of the money reaches families in the most efficient way.
“Although the Government has indicated that administrative and delivery costs for the setting up and running of the scheme should be deducted from the grant it has been our priority that all of the funds are made available for families directly.
“Consequently, 100% of the grant is being made available to spend on the essential provision of food vouchers, the cost of essential utilities or other forms of support for individuals and families.
“We want to make sure that every penny possible of the Covid Winter Grant goes to those who need it the most and this is formalised in the report to Cabinet sitting on 14 January 2021.”
Families whose circumstances have recently changed are being urged to apply for free school meals for January to ensure they qualify for the next round of food vouchers in February. Parents can apply on the county council’s website: www.derbyshire.gov.uk/freeschoolmeals
Anyone who is struggling financially, with or without children at home, is encouraged to visit www.derbyshire.gov.uk/winter for a list of the many places Derbyshire residents can go to get help.
The full cabinet report is available online: https://democracy.derbyshire.gov.uk/documents/g646/Public reports pack 14th-Jan-2021 14.00 Cabinet.pdf?T=10