Finances and extra costs
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How many people have to play heat or eat

jonviper123jonviper123 Member Posts: 2 Listener
Today I play heat or eat I am sure many of you are familiar with this I worked until I got chd and stupidity made me think I would be looked after medically and financially now I feel stupid because medically and financially the society I thought would help me has let me down food banks empty DWP forget it hundreds of thousands hungry what happened ? Jon

Replies

  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 1,756 Listener
    The user and all related content has been deleted.
  • Sam_AlumniSam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,729 Disability Gamechanger
    They did a heat or eat experiment to raise awareness of this and it is just dreadful.
    Scope
    Senior online community officer
  • Sam_AlumniSam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,729 Disability Gamechanger
    edited March 2018
    Are you claiming everything you can? Please take a look at our benefits calculator to check this.

    We have some information here about fuel bills and you can search for your nearest foodbank here.

    It is a terrible reality that people in the UK are going through this choice, if you wanted to speak to someone, you can call the Scope helpline on 0808 800 3333.


    Scope
    Senior online community officer
  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @jonviper123 Good morning.  Sorry what you are going through.  The big issue is to look at what you are entitled to.  Benefits.  That is important.  Find out from Welfare rights, CAB.

    I do sympathise with your situation being constantly reassessed all the time has left me being aware of my failings of finances.

    Sometimes I had no benefit for a month, last time.  Waited a whole month before I got ESA. 

    So I need to plan.  Need to shop carefully,  need to budget, need to be sensible.

    Please can I suggest look at what the community has to offer.  In the form of support.  By way I never ever used a food bank.  That I could have.  Used my knowledge gained from doing simple things.

    There are courses available usually by organisations to help you.  Deal with your wellbeing, finances, budgeting.

    Use the internet to gain valuable information and knowledge on a wealth of topics.  Utilities companies want your business.  Also be aware of what you have finance wise.

    A lot things like direct debit on payment plans are options.  Smart meter another.  Shop around.  You are in control.  You can for example if you have in your home key system of paying Utilities remove it.  That is a waste of money, spend far too much.

    A lot of Utilities on line now new ones all the time.  You can contact them by email and some have apps on mobile phone.  Meter readings check send much as possible. Besides they do notify you of when to send. 

    I have changed companies some times two in a year.  Not happy change.

    Have mobile or TV packages negotiate with companies.  They do wish to lose you.  Even cancel.  I do not have saterlite TV but Free sat.  Did have SKY went want to cancel gave me six months free.  So worth checking.

    Also be aware of simple food choices.   It is not all about meat but having food choices that cost no money at all. See my posts on food ideas.  Or let me know what you like I can advise.  Please note shop around make changes.  A tin of beans is a tin of beans for example.  Own brands good value, I changed to discount stores.  Saves a hell of lot of money per month.

    It is being practical you have friends here to advise and help.

    Also remember do you need?  Is that essential?

    I am not being critical just have been there.  So hard but am still learning.

    Take care

    Your friend



    Community Champion
    SCOPE Volunteer Award Engaging Communities 2019
    Mental Health advice, guidance and information to all members
    Nutrition, Diet, Wellbeing, Addiction.
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  • gillian29gillian29 Member Posts: 36 Courageous
    Hi I’m Gillian,I’ve a son who’s just turned 18 and in his last year at college.All this week I’ve not had any heating on until my son comes in from college,I suffer with raynaurds and severe arthritis and the cold makes everything ten times worse.when my son comes home from college and asks what’s for tea,I tell him what there is and say I’ve eaten,because can’t afford food and heating.Ive lost two stone in weight.Im on income related easa,in the support group and am getting enhanced caring part
    if pip,and standard rate mobility.I was also getting the severe disability part of easa which was £60,when my son turned 18 they stopped that no warning.I asked if I was entitled to cold weather payment they said because my son was living with me  I’m not entitled to it.My son is studying full time at college,and has no money and can’t find a little job to help out.Im getting penalised for having my son at home.My son looks after me every spare minute he’s got,but can’t claim careers allowance because he’s full time at college.Never been so down,can’t afford to go out at all,so stuck inside all the time is driving me mad,
  • JennysDadJennysDad Member Posts: 2,308 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @gillian29
    Words pretty much fail me, Gillian. What can one say?
    Have you tried the benefits calculator, just in case? It's https://www.scope.org.uk/support/disabled-people/benefits/check?_ga=2.119995149.405444417.1517054923-1832321402.1513208436
    If there is ANYTHING you think I can do, talk to me.
    Here and listening,
    Richard
  • gillian29gillian29 Member Posts: 36 Courageous
    Hello @JennysDad Thanks for just reading and replying to my essay.Will look at the benefits calculator again,but don’t think I have missed anything.Its awful thinking that if I lived on my own I would get loads of help,but then again I wouldn’t have my son at home helping with most things,so I would have to pay someone to help.Dont think there is anything you can do,but thanks for
    listening.
    gillian
  • JennysDadJennysDad Member Posts: 2,308 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi Gillian, @gillian29
    Listening I will do, for so long as I live. I wish to Heaven I could do something more.
    Warmest best wishes,
    Richard
  • gillian29gillian29 Member Posts: 36 Courageous
    Hi Richard,@JennysDad,I’ve put all my details into turn to us calculator,and it says I should be still getting £188 income related easa a week,I said in the form my son is over 18 and at college,so why have the benefits people knocked £60 every week,I rang them up and they said it is because my sons over 18,don’t know who is right and who to ask next 
    gillian
  • JennysDadJennysDad Member Posts: 2,308 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi Gillian, @gillian29
    and thank you for getting back to me. So the calculator suggests you should be getting more than you are actually getting?
    I'm not a benefits expert, but we have a good number of them here. Can you bear with us, and one of them will get back to you.
    Any thoughts, @CockneyRebel?
    Warmest best wishes,
    Richard
  • gillian29gillian29 Member Posts: 36 Courageous
    Hi Richard,@JennysDad,do some of the benefits advisors just work through the week.
    gillian
  • CockneyRebelCockneyRebel Member Posts: 5,257 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi gillian

    You might need the assisstance of CAB for this
    As your son is in full time education, there may be a case to argue that he is still a dependant

    CR
    Be all you can be, make  every day count. Namaste
  • gillian29gillian29 Member Posts: 36 Courageous
    Hello @CockneyRebel,I think I should be entitled to the full£188 my son is totally dependant on me till he finishes college in June.I get child benefit and they pay that to the end of August,giving my son chance to decide what’s he’s going to do next.I will try and get in touch with Citizens advice in the next few days.Is there anybody else on here in a similar situation,I could talk to
    many thanks 
    gillian
  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @gillian29 Pleased to meet you.  I am puzzled and confused by your story.

    Do not understand this at all.  Please can I suggest have a look at an organisation called Welfare Rights.  This organisation deals with benefit queries like yours.

    Also very good explain things simple.  I have used them.

    This can not go on.  One of the issues just because DWP say to you because of your situation with your son  You do not take their word for it.  You ask for clarification in writing and ask to speak to a benefit advisor.

    I am sure that will help, I feel for you and do understand the problems.

    DWP some of my dealings are like one minute confusing and next totally unnecessary.  Rules and regulations even they do not know what they are talking about.

    Have some one look at what you claiming.  I notice you claim Income support related ESA in the support group.  That is a benefit based on how much income you have coming in.  Have savings, redundancy payments any salaries or wages. I am based on contributions ESA in the support group.  There is a difference.

    What you need is also a person who can speak for you.  To sort this mess out.  Just because you have a son living at home.  There is some confusion on my part here.

    Perhaps you need an advocate or something like that to sift through why you benefit stopped.  Welfare rights, benefits advisor or CAB.  Amounts of benefit in my opinion do not tally which should be something's amiss.

    Remember this is not your fault, some times.  You need to sit down write everything out.  What you are claiming for who for.   Money coming in what is going out.  Even speak to the organisations I have suggested.  Also a financial advisor. The people and look at options open to you.

    Please can I say even I had problems understanding mentally the system of benefits.  I am knowledgeable person but I do know you have to be aware.

    Please take care hope I can help


    Community Champion
    SCOPE Volunteer Award Engaging Communities 2019
    Mental Health advice, guidance and information to all members
    Nutrition, Diet, Wellbeing, Addiction.
    Recipes
  • gillian29gillian29 Member Posts: 36 Courageous
    Hello @thespiceman,thanks for all your advice.when I went on benefits three years ago,I was put
    on contribution based easa,then a few months later they said I had to go on Iincome related easa because I had a some savings,that has all gone now.what is the difference between contribution easa and income related easa,do you think I should be on contribution based one,iThe  severe disability extra bit is that added to the contribution easa and how much is that.Tomirrow I will try and contact welfare rights,this is all so confusing and stressing me out
  • GeoarkGeoark Member, Scope Volunteer Posts: 1,375 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @gillian29 and welcome to the community.

    I see you have already been given some good advice.

    Have you been in touch with your fuel supplier to let them know of your conditions? The big companies at least would have a priority service team for those with long term illnesses and disabilities who can make special arrangements which you would not normally get via the main contact team. 

    To give an example we have a gas and electric meter, as my daughter has autism and would panic if the electricity ran out it has been arranged our electric meter will not cut out during the night even if we have used up the emergency credit on the card.

    As well as the cold weather payment there is also the warm home discount. Unfortunately you will not get it for this year, but talking to your supplier now they should be able to send you the form automatically when the scheme reopens for 2018/19 - downside when we claimed this was the discount came after the cold weather. I would strongly recommend sending  the form back as soon as possible, as once they have enough applications they tend to close it. 

    But if you are struggling with opting to heat your home during cold weather like the last week please call your supplier and see what they can do.

    As an individual I stood alone.
    As a member of a group I did things.
    As part of a community I helped to create change!

  • gillian29gillian29 Member Posts: 36 Courageous
    Hello @Geoark,thank you for your advice greatly appreciated,I will ring n power up tomorrow and ask about this warm home discount,every little bit helps.Im 54 and have never had to ask for help it goes against the grain,but things are just getting harder and harder.Thanks again you’ve all been very helpful
    gillian
  • GeoarkGeoark Member, Scope Volunteer Posts: 1,375 Disability Gamechanger
    @gillian29, you are welcome.

    As an individual I stood alone.
    As a member of a group I did things.
    As part of a community I helped to create change!

  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @gillian29 Good morning how are you.  Thank you for reply.  Only this morning received your post.

    Please can I also advise can I suggest help such as a disability or mental health charity.  They offer not only support but a range of information.  You seem a smart intelligent lady.  I just know hoping I give a lot of positivity.

    Please have a look on the web a lot of the conditions you may have.  Often have their own charities or associations.  With a range of support and information plus other things like support groups.

    It is just spending some time.  Having a look on the web.

    Please can I also say that I had contacted some charities like AGE UK.  Thought might be OK.  Unfortunately start at 60.  I am 53.  Although I have been told this under review.

    I notice you have never said if you have a mental condition.  Simple anxiety and depression can be a problem in our lives.  With that comes again support, self confidence.

    Speak to your GP for any referral or can self referral.  Please can I say also life is a struggle and hard.

    I come here as a friend to say.  This community will be trying to help you much as possible.  Unfortunately we live in a world being self centered and people not doing there job.  Jobs worth is the norm.  Sorry to say.  No one helps and puts them selves out.

    We do as a community.  I will as I hope a friend.  You have received some good advice from every one.  I am here to listen.

    I live on my own thanks to charities I got involved with.  Made some inroads to healing.

    Finally please I also say have a look what you community can offer.  In the form of self improvement, well being course.  These are often set up by charities, welfare groups, NHS funded.  On a wealth of courses from dealing with people, to communication, to getting most from your GP.  Courses have how to  deal with meds.  To Yoga relaxation techniques diet fitness health etc.

    I have done loads of these some have how to deal with benefits, budgeting, 

    I am still learning .

    Take care

    Your friend.
    Community Champion
    SCOPE Volunteer Award Engaging Communities 2019
    Mental Health advice, guidance and information to all members
    Nutrition, Diet, Wellbeing, Addiction.
    Recipes
  • gillian29gillian29 Member Posts: 36 Courageous
    Hello @thespiceman, I’ve had a very
    busy day but also very
    productive.I got in touch with welfare rights about having my severe disability stopped,I was told I should still be receiving until my son finishes college.So I rang up the benefits and after been put on hold for what seemed like forever,the woman said again I should not receive it after my son had turned 18,so I asked to speak to their supervisor or manager So was put on hold again,any way they have restarted it and also back dated it,so thanks very much for your advice.
    i was also told to ring my energy supplier up and ask about the warm home discount,they are sending me out a form to fill in,so that will be a big help.N power where extremely helpful.
    Tonight I might actually get some sleep I have been so stressed out and worried about money it was making my condition ten times worse,specialist said I had to avoid stress at all costs,that’s a laugh.
    I haven’t got a mental health condition but suffer with severe bouts of depression and get very anxious about assessments and health related issues.I have lupus and seri negative arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis and oesteoarthritis and severe raynaurds,my right hand is so contracted I can hardly use it.I also had a knee replacement that didn’t work,so left with very limited movement with my right knee,I can’t go on a aeroplane a bus etc because there’s not enough room with my knee not bending much.
    Any way thanks again
    gillian 
  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @gillian29 Good morning  Thank you for reply.  I see reading this morning you post you have done a lot.

    That is good.  I was just making a suggestion about your mental health.  I am a sort of person who suffered with these bouts of depression plus severe anxiety.

    I am like yourself a proud person, do not complain about disability or illness.  Yet my friends  were concerned for my well being.

    I had to admit that going to a doctor and saying what is wrong is never easy.

    Since doing that twenty plus years ago, I have benefited extra support and gained insight the way I am.  When I meant support this includes some one visiting your house for a specific period of time.  Not easy I had trust issues.  You have some one their to talk to.  Some one to fight your corner benefits, doctors and anything else.  Especially forms and things like that.  Useful suggestions and advice. Stopping alcohol was a factor.  Plus diet and lifestyle.

    Comes with knowledge also what has made a difference is saying to Doctor my illness.  Admitting to DWP as well is never easy yet I had to because you get advantages of extra money.

    As I say that is why I have to be aware of my health situation I am in.  I am in daily flux of stress and anxiety.  Plus depression.  Because I have been to these Mental Health charities I am more acutely aware of my problems and how to cope.  This what they do.

    I wish you the best.

    I am still here to talk chat advise listen.

    Take care
    Community Champion
    SCOPE Volunteer Award Engaging Communities 2019
    Mental Health advice, guidance and information to all members
    Nutrition, Diet, Wellbeing, Addiction.
    Recipes
  • whistleswhistles Member Posts: 1,590 Disability Gamechanger
    I think it's disgusting in 2018 anybody needs to be torn between this choice. 

    I think if you are seeking work, then the benefits system works to help you out short term. 
    But for those of us who can't work, depending on our conditions I actually don't see how is possible to have a life. 

    The council once quoted to me that people who are ill stay in bed and therefore eat less! 
    Do not follow me, I don't know where I am going.
  • thespicemanthespiceman Member Posts: 6,408 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @whistles Pleased to meet you.  The great huge problem is also our ageing society.  Choices to live for the future very scary and there has been much discussion on the forums.

    I agree with you comments and it is impossible to think how all of us who are in the age bracket 50 plus.  Is the benefit system working for me.  I am in a long term illness and disability.  Striving and struggling constantly to have a life.

    My situation every day is why me lord, wish I had done this and that to look forward to what.

    I remain positive and have days of being up beat.  Help my friends in the community much as I can.  Love what I can do to advise and give what time I have to people here.

    No one ever tells you anything and asking for help and support when you were young was different.  Then in the seventies and eighties they was a bit more care in the jobs that people did.  A community now with the erosion of society, extended families broken up.   Long term employment, poor wages. By years of successive Government failings to just look after the wealthy and those avoiding tax.  This country is on it's knees.

    I had in the last year or too numerous calls from fairweather friends got a room for sharing.  Because they are living on the edge, constantly asking me for advice and how and when and who to turn to.

    Song says a change is going to come.  Where I ask?
    Community Champion
    SCOPE Volunteer Award Engaging Communities 2019
    Mental Health advice, guidance and information to all members
    Nutrition, Diet, Wellbeing, Addiction.
    Recipes
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