The coronavirus situation is a worrying time for many of us, but there is help available. If you run a business, self-employed, an employee, unemployed or a home-maker, we’ve pulled together some web links of the resources and guidance available.
Whatever your financial situation, now is the time to cut back where you can, review your outgoings and increase your income if you are able. This guide from the Money Advice Service is a good place to start. www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en/articles/how-to-save-money-on-household-bills. BBC has a helpful article if you are struggling with your bills www.bbc.co.uk/news/newsbeat-51917148
If you are struggling with your gas, electric or other utilities then do contact them; they know that this is an unprecedented situation and they do have resources to help. Mobile phone and internet providers are a utility too; O2, Three, Vodafone and others have extended phone and data services plus free to contact NHS 111 and 111.nhs.uk.
There are a lot of concessions being made for people affected financially by Coronavirus, but interest will still accrue during any Emergency Payment Freeze, so will cost more in the long run. if you are unaffected or able to pay your bills, mortgage, rent, loan payments then you should continue to pay them.
What you could be entitled to https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en/articles/coronavirus-what-it-means-for-you
Self Employment & Universal Credit https://www.gov.uk/self-employment-and-universal-credit
Employment & Support Allowance https://www.gov.uk/employment-support-allowance
Covid-19 Small Business Government Grant https://smallbusiness.co.uk/how-do-i-get-the-government-3000-coronavirus-grant-2549866/
Chamber of Commerce support guide for business and charities https://www.greaterbirminghamchambers.com/media/883628/government-support-for-businesses-coronavirus-covid-19-v6.pdf
Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan https://smallbusiness.co.uk/how-do-i-apply-for-a-coronavirus-business-interruption-loan-2549863/
Citizen’s Advice living costs advice https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/help-if-on-a-low-income/if-youre-struggling-with-living-costs/
Emergency Funding https://www.stepchange.org/debt-info/emergency-funding.aspx
Money Advice Service https://www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en/articles/coronavirus-and-your-money
Some of us are fortunate to be able to continue working from home or have a consistent income. If you are able to support others at this time there are many local opportunities:
Food banks are struggling with supplies. These are the ones we are aware of: Sutton Coldfield Town Hall is now the drop-off point for Erdington food banks.