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Funding Urgently Required to Keep Money Matters Going

Published on 25 April 2019 04:00 PM

Age UK Cheshire’s Money Matters project is a lifeline service for older people with money worries.  It is a service unique to Cheshire which has been funded by the National Lottery for the past five years. Sadly this funding is now coming to an end in May 2019. 

Although we have been actively seeking continuation funding for this greatly needed service, so far we have been unsuccessful. 

Money Matters pairs up older people in Cheshire with volunteers who can work with vulnerable older clients in their own home. The service supports people who might find it difficult to use technology and/or are unable to confidently relate their problems over the phone and are experiencing financial difficulties.

Volunteers work tirelessly with older people to ensure they have a voice to solve their financial problems, which can include small debts, threatened evictions, problems with utility bills, financial abuse, death of a partner and underclaiming benefit entitlements. The volunteers provide invaluable support by liaising with debt recovery agencies, banks, companies, housing and supporting with benefit applications and setting up financial systems for the individuals. 

Over the past five years the Money Matters Mentors have undertaken 1,750 home visits to 910 clients, supporting and helping them with their financial issues and enabling an average saving, per client, of £329.00   

One client commented: “My mentors have been marvellous.  I can’t thank you all enough.  On top of my Alzheimer’s diagnosis and the stress I was under with the debts, I was also worrying that they would take away my bed and cooker if I missed a payment.  This was also making me ill.  I have a very manageable future now for myself and my children, thanks to all that the Money Matters Project did for me”

Another client commented: “I had around £6,000 in debt.  I had no idea how to sort this issue out.  If it hadn’t been for the mentor, the bills would have just got bigger.  I don’t think I would be in my own home now either.  I can now just get a regular amount of money out of my cash account and the bills get paid so I don’t have to bother with them at all – thanks to the budget plan set in place with my Age UK Cheshire Mentor.”

Lucy Welsh, Head of Services at Age UK Cheshire commented: “We are immensely proud of the work that the small paid staff team and 40 volunteers have delivered over the years. The difference this service has made to the lives of vulnerable older people in Cheshire is immeasurable.

Although we have now had to close our doors to any new referrals, we are still very active in seeking the £43,000k per year funding required to keep the service going and would more than welcome any new funding leads and opportunities available”.

To find out more, or to get in touch, please contact Lucy Welsh, Head of Services at Age UK Cheshire on t:01606 305022 or email lucy.welsh@ageukcheshire.org.uk