A NEW freephone number - 0300 111 8008 - has been launched to provide help to those in need in East Staffordshire, Lichfield and Tamworth.
It will put them straight in touch with trained advisers at Staffordshire County Council’s new Local Crisis Support Scheme, which takes the place of the previous Social Fund, recently discontinued by central Government.
The initiative will provide furniture and other essential items within three days of requests for help being approved in Lichfield and Tamworth, and can also offer clothing and food to those living in East Staffordshire.
In these three areas, the Local Crisis Support Scheme is being provided by Burton YMCA, which is one of eight providers newly-appointed to work with the county council.
John Cox, at Burton YMCA, added: “We have been supplying emergency furniture and other items to people in Burton for many years and we see this as an extension of our services, helping those in need. We are looking forward to working across a larger area and making new friends in Tamworth and Lichfield.”
He added that while the new Local Crisis Support Scheme was funded by the council, Burton YMCA’s normal operations would continue.
He said: “There has been a substantial rise in demand for help among those in need over the last few years and we are still extremely dependent on the goodwill of local people to meet, for example, the rapidly rising need for emergency food in Burton.”