Extra funding for Citizens Advice
Published: Tuesday, 6th March 2018
A local service providing vital support and advice to thousands of people across the borough is getting an additional cash boost from the council.
Citizens Advice Maidenhead & Windsor will receive one-off extra funding of £32,810 allowing it to help up to 4,000 residents resolve a range of issues and enable more long term problem solving.
The Royal Borough already provides the charity annual funding of £132,000 to offer advice on a number of matters including debt, housing and employment.
This one-off grant of £32,810 was approved at the recent full council meeting and it will enable them to double the number of volunteers recruited in the coming year and provide help to hundreds more people.
The charity applied to the council at the end of last year for additional funding.
They pay a peppercorn rent to the council for their office at 4 Marlow Road, Maidenhead and also operate their services from Windsor Library and the Bridge Café, Datchet.
This extra money will allow the service to continue dealing with cases, including more complex ones that require a number of appointments and home visits for the housebound. The service offers expert advice on:
• Debt and financial issues.
• Benefits applications and appeals.
• Housing and the risk of homelessness.
• Practical help around a relationship breakdown.
• Challenging discrimination.
• Consumer rights.
Cllr Samantha Rayner, lead member for culture and communities, said: “Citizens Advice is a lifeline to thousands in the borough.
“The team do a very valuable and skilled job and I’m delighted the council can support them to expand.
“They already operate from Windsor Library and we hope this money will help them reach even further into the community.”
Cllr MJ Saunders, lead member for finance said: “This years’ prudent and considered budget has enabled us to help services like Citizens Advice care for and prevent further hardship for many Royal Borough families, at times where life may have become more challenging than usual.”
The group’s current Service Level Agreement (SLA) enables the free and impartial service to assist around 3,500 people a year. An extended SLA will allow them to support up to 4,000 and this is due to start on 1 April.
Christine O’Hare, chief executive of Citizens Advice Maidenhead & Windsor, said: “The council has been very supportive securing our funding of over £164,000 for 2018/19 and giving us a 10-year peppercorn lease on our premises in 4 Marlow Road.
“We are so grateful to the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead for providing these well located offices which include five interview rooms and office space for staff and volunteers at no costs to Citizens Advice.
“We are very fortunate to have such strong support from the local authority who really value our services. With reliable funding we are able to assist thousands of residents - many of whom would struggle without help from Citizens Advice.
“This couldn’t be achieved without support from our dedicated volunteers and we are looking for new volunteers to join us in a variety of roles.”
For more information on the charity visit maidenheadcab.org.uk/ or see @MaidenheadCAB on twitter.