PADSG CIO 1193764 -  117 Conistone Rd Peterborough PE4 7GU
1193764

Latest update from Citizens Advice Peterborough

What’s going on CAP this week   Household Support Fund We are helping to administer the Household Support Fund to Peterborough residents on behalf of Peterborough City Council. Residents are entitled to £25 towards food or £50 towards home heating. To apply for the Household Support Fund, clients must be in receipt of Universal Credit, Income Support, Personal Independent Payment, Disability Living Allowance or Employment & Support Allowance.   As well as this: They must live in Peterborough They must be between the ages of 18 and 66. They must be single or part of a couple and have no dependants unless the children are aged under two, or above two but not in receipt of free school meals. They must also be personally liable for the power supply where they live (tenant or mortgage holder). They cannot have previously received assistance from the Household Support Fund.   If you have checked the eligibility for the Household Support Fund for a client and they meet the criteria, fill in the online form and someone will contact the client via phone within the next 10 working days https://forms.office.com/r/B1iXzMY7GE   Supervisor reminders   This week’s updates from our supervisors for our client-facing team members: the new Household Support Fund (HSF) is live. If you speak to a client who you think is eligible (see above), please take the relevant details and ask if they would like support with food (£25) or home heating (£50). Please speak to a supervisor for full details.   If a client asks about the HSF, and they are capable of submitting a claim, advise them to complete the online form on our website. If the client states they have already completed the form, speak to a supervisor and we can check if they have been called yet and if they did not answer - we can make a note for them to be tried again. Inform clients it can take up to 10 working days for them to be assessed, we will only attempt to contact them twice and they cannot apply to the scheme more than once (each time it is released i.e. from 20/06/22 onwards - if they applied last year that is ok!)   Council Tax / Energy Rebate scheme   The council tax/energy rebate scheme has now gone live in Peterborough.  Click here for a briefing note and the council's website has been updated with the latest changes: https://www.peterborough.gov.uk/council/council-tax/council-tax-energy-rebate   There are two options as planned and outlined in the briefing note: A council tax credit option. This is a short, simple form for residents to confirm their details/eligibility and request the credit is applied to their council tax account.   A bank account payment form. This is for people who would like a payment to their bank account. It has been kept as simple as possible, and while it does ask for a bank statement to be uploaded to assist with the verification of their identity this is not mandatory, so those unable to do this can skip this question (although this may delay the payment if we are otherwise unable to verify their ID).   For those residents without internet access and with no-one to otherwise assist them to make a claim they can call the customer services number and request a call back for someone to assist them with an application. Due to the numbers of applicants (c. 30,000) there may be a delay in providing this service and so all residents are encouraged to complete the form themselves if this is possible. Anyone who hasn't claimed at the end of the application process and who we believe is eligible from our existing records will have their council tax account credited.   Updates from Citizens Advice   DWP have started moving some people over to Universal Credit as part of ‘Managed Migration’. We’re looking for evidence of claimants’ experience so that we can help DWP to improve the process for clients. Find out more about how you can help us to help affected clients   With your help, we’ve decided on a name for our new phones platform and have called it Connect. Thanks to everyone who took part in our poll and shared ideas.   Supporting advisers to overcome barriers to giving great telephone advice   The Core Service Development team has published this guidance aimed at supporting advisers and supervisors to give great telephone advice over the phone. The guidance gives some tools, techniques and considerations that may help to overcome some common barriers to giving great quality advice while looking after yourself. It isn’t an exhaustive list but we hope it provides a helpful starting point, and it covers a number of key topics, including: Different scenarios you might encounter when communicating with clients over the phone Supporting vulnerable clients over the phone De-escalating angry calls Looking after yourself   You can find the resource on the Adviceline Directory under ‘Adviser training’. However, it’s not Adviceline specific - we have created this guidance so that it supports telephone advice across our services.   We’d be keen to hear any feedback so that we can use it to develop this guidance and make it as useful as possible. If you have suggestions, please let us know by emailing core-servicedevelopment@citizensadvice.org.uk   BBCS Service   The BBCS Service offers a FREE peer support service across Peterborough and Wisbech (and the surrounding areas) for pregnant women or those with a child under 2 years old. All volunteers complete an 18-hour OCN certified training programme which focuses on improving their listening skills, enables them to support without giving advice and researches local resources which may offer additional support.   This is a FREE service and the types of support our volunteers offer include: Weekly 1-2-1 peer support in a public place or via the telephone Providing information about the local area Signposting to local and national services Accompanying to local groups and/or appointments   More information and an online referral form can be found by visiting: https://www.nct.org.uk/bbcs   Referrals will also be accepted via telephone/email.   Anglian Water Extra Care Support   In the last year, the Anglian Water Extra Care Support has helped over 320,000 customers stay on top of their bills. Their specially-trained team can help find a way forward, with a personalised plan made just for each customer. They can make sure customers are on the right tariff, look at payment plans and point them towards other help and benefits to increase household income. The easiest way to get started is by completing their Extra Care Assessment online or speak to the Extra Care Support team on 0800 169 3630. It’s all part of their WaterCare service. Here’s a few examples of how they can help: Maximise your income and benefits As part of our Extra Care Assessment, we’ll check for ways to maximise your income by advising what benefits your household may be entitled to. We’ll also let you know about any additional support you may be entitled to such as the Warm Home Discount Scheme. We’d recommend seeing what other government support you might be able to get. There’s information and advice on how to increase your income, as well as support for bills, housing and childcare costs online here.   Get discounts of up to 50% If you pay measured charges through a water meter, we have a range of different tariffs available including WaterSure and AquaCare Plus. And with our LITE or Extra LITE tariffs, you could get a discount of up to 50% on your water and sewerage charges, depending on your situation.   Could you save money with a meter? Most customers save on average £150 per year by switching to a water meter. Our risk-free switchback guarantee means you can go back to unmeasured charges up to two years after having a meter fitted if you’re not better off. Find out more here or call 03457 919 155 to book your free appointment.    Flexible payments plans to suit you We offer payment plans that flex around you. Make weekly, fortnightly or monthly payments, plus you can pay your bill automatically by Direct Debit or choose from a range of other ways to pay.   Payment holidays We offer payment holidays to give you a little breathing space while you get help with your finances.    Pay direct from your benefits with Water Direct If you’re currently getting benefits such as Income Support, Job Seekers Allowance, Pension Credit, Employment Support Allowance or Universal Credit the Benefits Office can arrange for you to make payments directly from your benefits towards your water bill. These would cover your ongoing charges plus any outstanding amount on your account including any County Court Claims.   Citizens Advice annual conference   A key milestone in the Citizens Advice calendar each year is our annual conference. It’s a brilliant event for everyone across the service - last year was our biggest one ever with 3,500 participants, and this year we’d love even more people to get involved!   This year's conference, AGM and awards will take place from 7th – 10th November 2022. After 2 years of running the conference online due to the pandemic, this year we’re trying something new by having both online and in-person elements.   Everyone from across the service, no matter what your role is, will be able to join the conference online from Monday through to Thursday and there’ll be a range of sessions and formats to engage in. On Wednesday 9 November, we’ll also run an in-person event in Birmingham at The Eastside Rooms for our awards ceremony, AGM, sessions and networking. The main plenary sessions will also be live-streamed and we’ll run online versions of the sessions.   Three things we said this week   Sharing stories from the frontline of the cost of living crisis Over the weekend, a panel of local Citizens Advice, Tom Godwin, Tracy Hopkins and Julie Ann Riseborough - joined our Head of Policy Kayley Hignell on Matt Chorley’s show. They spoke about how cost-of-living pressures are hitting families across our services, including in Blackpool, Rhondda and the South West. The segment ended with Matt reading out a text they’d had in: "Listening to the lovely Citizens Advice people gives you faith in human nature. What wonderful, caring and kind people they are." Listen back   Techniques scammers use to fool you It’s a difficult time for everyone at the moment. Everyday essentials like food, energy and fuel are more expensive than ever. We’re all worried about money, and scammers are taking advantage of this. They’re using the energy crisis as a new way to exploit people, but the techniques they use are tried and tested. Here are techniques scammers use time and time again…   How we’re working with community groups to build equity into our services At Citizens Advice, we’re starting to address how we can practically build equity into our user research and design. We recently set up a community of practice and are using frameworks and tools to help us move forward. We know some communities face barriers and exclusion because of their identity and background. We’ve recently begun to work more closely with grassroots community groups in our research. By recruiting in this way, we can involve people from communities that face exclusion. Read more in our blog   Anything to include in the next CAPture?   Please email any updates for inclusion in the next CAPture to Helen by 12 noon on Friday each week helenj@peterboroughcab.org.uk   Here to help and support you   Please speak to any member of the management team: Keith Jones, James Roberts and Helen Jones   Or the advice session supervisors: Eloise Carrick, Janette Parkin and Kurt Storey     Contact your representative with any feedback on how we can improve things at CAP: Your staff rep – Eloise Carrick eloisec@peterboroughcab.org.uk Your volunteer rep – TBC     Our Equality Diversity and Inclusion working group members: Khadija Browne and Tanya Lee (our EDI mentors) Jane Powell (volunteer representative) Sonia Butt (staff representative) Helen Jones (management team representative)     Our Research and Campaigns team: Supervisor - Kurt Storey R&C Co-ordinator – Jane Powell R&C Assistants – Brian Lewis, Lauren King, Josh Fowler, Ashley Greene, Ella Thomas, Barbara Jika     Mental Health and Wellbeing support:   Remember that you can check the wellbeing workplace group for resources and support   All local staff and volunteers can also register to use Togetherall - an online mental health and wellbeing service that offers anonymous, confidential support 24 hours a day  
PADSG CIO 1193764 -  117 Conistone Rd Peterborough PE4 7GU
1193764

Latest update from Citizens Advice Peterborough

What’s going on CAP this week   Household Support Fund We are helping to administer the Household Support Fund to Peterborough residents on behalf of Peterborough City Council. Residents are entitled to £25 towards food or £50 towards home heating. To apply for the Household Support Fund, clients must be in receipt of Universal Credit, Income Support, Personal Independent Payment, Disability Living Allowance or Employment & Support Allowance.   As well as this: They must live in Peterborough They must be between the ages of 18 and 66. They must be single or part of a couple and have no dependants unless the children are aged under two, or above two but not in receipt of free school meals. They must also be personally liable for the power supply where they live (tenant or mortgage holder). They cannot have previously received assistance from the Household Support Fund.   If you have checked the eligibility for the Household Support Fund for a client and they meet the criteria, fill in the online form and someone will contact the client via phone within the next 10 working days https://forms.office.com/r/B1iXzMY7GE   Supervisor reminders   This week’s updates from our supervisors for our client-facing team members: the new Household Support Fund (HSF) is live. If you speak to a client who you think is eligible (see above), please take the relevant details and ask if they would like support with food (£25) or home heating (£50). Please speak to a supervisor for full details.   If a client asks about the HSF, and they are capable of submitting a claim, advise them to complete the online form on our website. If the client states they have already completed the form, speak to a supervisor and we can check if they have been called yet and if they did not answer - we can make a note for them to be tried again. Inform clients it can take up to 10 working days for them to be assessed, we will only attempt to contact them twice and they cannot apply to the scheme more than once (each time it is released i.e. from 20/06/22 onwards - if they applied last year that is ok!)   Council Tax / Energy Rebate scheme   The council tax/energy rebate scheme has now gone live in Peterborough.  Click here for a briefing note and the council's website has been updated with the latest changes: https://www.peterborough.gov.uk/council/council-tax/council-tax-energy-rebate   There are two options as planned and outlined in the briefing note: A council tax credit option. This is a short, simple form for residents to confirm their details/eligibility and request the credit is applied to their council tax account.   A bank account payment form. This is for people who would like a payment to their bank account. It has been kept as simple as possible, and while it does ask for a bank statement to be uploaded to assist with the verification of their identity this is not mandatory, so those unable to do this can skip this question (although this may delay the payment if we are otherwise unable to verify their ID).   For those residents without internet access and with no-one to otherwise assist them to make a claim they can call the customer services number and request a call back for someone to assist them with an application. Due to the numbers of applicants (c. 30,000) there may be a delay in providing this service and so all residents are encouraged to complete the form themselves if this is possible. Anyone who hasn't claimed at the end of the application process and who we believe is eligible from our existing records will have their council tax account credited.   Updates from Citizens Advice   DWP have started moving some people over to Universal Credit as part of ‘Managed Migration’. We’re looking for evidence of claimants’ experience so that we can help DWP to improve the process for clients. Find out more about how you can help us to help affected clients   With your help, we’ve decided on a name for our new phones platform and have called it Connect. Thanks to everyone who took part in our poll and shared ideas.   Supporting advisers to overcome barriers to giving great telephone advice   The Core Service Development team has published this guidance aimed at supporting advisers and supervisors to give great telephone advice over the phone. The guidance gives some tools, techniques and considerations that may help to overcome some common barriers to giving great quality advice while looking after yourself. It isn’t an exhaustive list but we hope it provides a helpful starting point, and it covers a number of key topics, including: Different scenarios you might encounter when communicating with clients over the phone Supporting vulnerable clients over the phone De-escalating angry calls Looking after yourself   You can find the resource on the Adviceline Directory under ‘Adviser training’. However, it’s not Adviceline specific - we have created this guidance so that it supports telephone advice across our services.   We’d be keen to hear any feedback so that we can use it to develop this guidance and make it as useful as possible. If you have suggestions, please let us know by emailing core-servicedevelopment@citizensadvice.org.uk   BBCS Service   The BBCS Service offers a FREE peer support service across Peterborough and Wisbech (and the surrounding areas) for pregnant women or those with a child under 2 years old. All volunteers complete an 18-hour OCN certified training programme which focuses on improving their listening skills, enables them to support without giving advice and researches local resources which may offer additional support.   This is a FREE service and the types of support our volunteers offer include: Weekly 1-2-1 peer support in a public place or via the telephone Providing information about the local area Signposting to local and national services Accompanying to local groups and/or appointments   More information and an online referral form can be found by visiting: https://www.nct.org.uk/bbcs   Referrals will also be accepted via telephone/email.   Anglian Water Extra Care Support   In the last year, the Anglian Water Extra Care Support has helped over 320,000 customers stay on top of their bills. Their specially-trained team can help find a way forward, with a personalised plan made just for each customer. They can make sure customers are on the right tariff, look at payment plans and point them towards other help and benefits to increase household income. The easiest way to get started is by completing their Extra Care Assessment online or speak to the Extra Care Support team on 0800 169 3630. It’s all part of their WaterCare service. Here’s a few examples of how they can help: Maximise your income and benefits As part of our Extra Care Assessment, we’ll check for ways to maximise your income by advising what benefits your household may be entitled to. We’ll also let you know about any additional support you may be entitled to such as the Warm Home Discount Scheme. We’d recommend seeing what other government support you might be able to get. There’s information and advice on how to increase your income, as well as support for bills, housing and childcare costs online here.   Get discounts of up to 50% If you pay measured charges through a water meter, we have a range of different tariffs available including WaterSure and AquaCare Plus. And with our LITE or Extra LITE tariffs, you could get a discount of up to 50% on your water and sewerage charges, depending on your situation.   Could you save money with a meter? Most customers save on average £150 per year by switching to a water meter. Our risk-free switchback guarantee means you can go back to unmeasured charges up to two years after having a meter fitted if you’re not better off. Find out more here or call 03457 919 155 to book your free appointment.    Flexible payments plans to suit you We offer payment plans that flex around you. Make weekly, fortnightly or monthly payments, plus you can pay your bill automatically by Direct Debit or choose from a range of other ways to pay.   Payment holidays We offer payment holidays to give you a little breathing space while you get help with your finances.    Pay direct from your benefits with Water Direct If you’re currently getting benefits such as Income Support, Job Seekers Allowance, Pension Credit, Employment Support Allowance or Universal Credit the Benefits Office can arrange for you to make payments directly from your benefits towards your water bill. These would cover your ongoing charges plus any outstanding amount on your account including any County Court Claims.   Citizens Advice annual conference   A key milestone in the Citizens Advice calendar each year is our annual conference. It’s a brilliant event for everyone across the service - last year was our biggest one ever with 3,500 participants, and this year we’d love even more people to get involved!   This year's conference, AGM and awards will take place from 7th – 10th November 2022. After 2 years of running the conference online due to the pandemic, this year we’re trying something new by having both online and in-person elements.   Everyone from across the service, no matter what your role is, will be able to join the conference online from Monday through to Thursday and there’ll be a range of sessions and formats to engage in. On Wednesday 9 November, we’ll also run an in-person event in Birmingham at The Eastside Rooms for our awards ceremony, AGM, sessions and networking. The main plenary sessions will also be live- streamed and we’ll run online versions of the sessions.   Three things we said this week   Sharing stories from the frontline of the cost of living crisis Over the weekend, a panel of local Citizens Advice, Tom Godwin, Tracy Hopkins and Julie Ann Riseborough - joined our Head of Policy Kayley Hignell on Matt Chorley’s show. They spoke about how cost-of-living pressures are hitting families across our services, including in Blackpool, Rhondda and the South West. The segment ended with Matt reading out a text they’d had in: "Listening to the lovely Citizens Advice people gives you faith in human nature. What wonderful, caring and kind people they are." Listen back   Techniques scammers use to fool you It’s a difficult time for everyone at the moment. Everyday essentials like food, energy and fuel are more expensive than ever. We’re all worried about money, and scammers are taking advantage of this. They’re using the energy crisis as a new way to exploit people, but the techniques they use are tried and tested. Here are techniques scammers use time and time again…   How we’re working with community groups to build equity into our services At Citizens Advice, we’re starting to address how we can practically build equity into our user research and design. We recently set up a community of practice and are using frameworks and tools to help us move forward. We know some communities face barriers and exclusion because of their identity and background. We’ve recently begun to work more closely with grassroots community groups in our research. By recruiting in this way, we can involve people from communities that face exclusion. Read more in our blog   Anything to include in the next CAPture?   Please email any updates for inclusion in the next CAPture to Helen by 12 noon on Friday each week helenj@peterboroughcab.org.uk   Here to help and support you   Please speak to any member of the management team: Keith Jones, James Roberts and Helen Jones   Or the advice session supervisors: Eloise Carrick, Janette Parkin and Kurt Storey     Contact your representative with any feedback on how we can improve things at CAP: Your staff rep – Eloise Carrick eloisec@peterboroughcab.org.uk Your volunteer rep – TBC     Our Equality Diversity and Inclusion working group members: Khadija Browne and Tanya Lee (our EDI mentors) Jane Powell (volunteer representative) Sonia Butt (staff representative) Helen Jones (management team representative)     Our Research and Campaigns team: Supervisor - Kurt Storey R&C Co-ordinator – Jane Powell R&C Assistants – Brian Lewis, Lauren King, Josh Fowler, Ashley Greene, Ella Thomas, Barbara Jika     Mental Health and Wellbeing support:   Remember that you can check the wellbeing workplace group for resources and support   All local staff and volunteers can also register to use Togetherall - an online mental health and wellbeing service that offers anonymous, confidential support 24 hours a day