NWAS Charity has launched a Hardship Fund, which is now open for applications. We recognise that various factors including; the pandemic, and the recent cost-of-living increases have left some colleagues in financial difficulty.
The fund offers a quick turnaround on applications for a one-off payment of up to £250. This is intended to be a short term help, while you seek wider and longer term support from both NWAS and other external agencies – a full list of recommended sources of help can be found on the Financial Support section of the Invest In Yourself site.
We would particularly recommend contacting The Ambulance Staff Charity (TASC) who can provide excellent support, guidance and advice for our colleagues.
The hardship scheme is open to all current members of NWAS staff with at least three months’ continuous service, paid at Band 5 or below. This includes permanent or fixed-term contracts, and bank staff, so long as they work a minimum of 10 hours per week on average, for the last three months. Payments will be capped at £250. The payment is a grant and not a loan, and there is no expectation of repayment.
To apply, complete the application form here. The form contains notes explaining how your application will be dealt with.
You must also seek a confidential discussion with your line manager (or another relevant supervisor if appropriate) to discuss your circumstances, and we will then require them to support your application. This also gives your manager the opportunity to offer additional support if needed.
All information disclosed will be treated with strict confidentiality.
Hardship Fund Case Studies:
Chloe found herself in a change in living arrangements through a relationship break up which added pressure to her financially. This, along with a flare up with a chronic medical condition which meant she had to take time off work on sick leave, she found herself struggling to cover the basics. Living in temporary housing including hostel’s and using food banks.
Chloe reached out to her manager for advice and support where she was given a range of support options from the trust and in addition, learnt about the Hardship Fund which the NWAS charity runs. Chloe put an application in for a grant which was swiftly accepted and granted to her.
“Receiving this grant through the Hardship Fund really helped to ease the pressure and gave me a boost. One thing which takes its toll on your mental health when you are struggling financially is always having to depend on others and generosity of places like food banks. With this grant I was able to by myself toiletries like shampoo and healthy foods which helped to get me out of a dark place and feel like myself again.”– Chloe
A change in working circumstances meant that this member of staff found themselves down by a quarter of their salary across a two-month period. This created a situation of financial difficulty in that the staff member became temporarily unable to cover day to day living costs such as buying petrol, food and bills for that period.
The staff member found details of the hardship fund via NWAS Charity button on the staff app and decided to put forward their application for a grant of which they were accepted. The grant helped them massively and helped provide peace of mind that certain bills wouldn’t be missed, so food and petrol was covered.
“I would highly recommend the scheme to colleagues who might find themselves in a similar situation. It was a quick turnaround and the grant helped relieve worries and concerns for that period which in turn had a positive impact on my mental health. Thank you to NWAS Charity for providing this support and for helping me through a difficult time.”– Anonymous
If you have any queries about the Hardship Fund, please email: [email protected]