04 January 2024

Summary: We understand the importance of having a warm, safe and dry home, especially during the challenging winter season. Many people across the country are facing difficulties, and that’s why we're committed to continue providing extra support to those who need it in the communities we serve.


Recent research from the Trussell Trust in 2023, reveals that even working families are struggling, with 32% finding it difficult to heat their homes and 21% unable to afford essential journeys like school runs and travel to work. To address this, we have been actively listening to MTVH residents, to learn about their needs and finding ways we to provide meaningful support. One way we’ve provided support is through partnerships with programs like:

Children in Need Emergency Essentials Programme
Since 2020, we’ve been working with Children In Need to support families with children through their Emergency Essentials Programme. In the past year, 62 MTVH residents received vital assistance, including beds, furniture, and clothing vouchers.

An MTVH resident and mum of two children, said:

“I received 2 single beds and mattresses from the fund. I am on a very low income and going through a divorce, with no support from ex-partner and must do everything alone. I have two girls,15- and 6-year-old, they have been sharing bed for 4 years now.  When I received new beds and mattresses, I felt very relieved, my kids were able to sleep independently without sharing a bed.”

Pocket Power
With energy prices continuing to soar, we’ve teamed up with Pocket Power for the third consecutive year. This partnership offers an inclusive phone service to help residents save money on household bills and connect with financial support. Since 2020, over 632 MTVH residents have switched to cheaper deals and applied for discounts, resulting in a total savings of £169,399.Almost half (49%) of adults in Great Britain are using less fuel such as gas or electricity in their homes because of the cost of living (ONS,2023).

An MTVH resident, comments on pocket power and how it’s helped her:

“Pocket Power was very useful service, I was provided with tips on how to save energy and that helped me realise that there are cheaper options available. The advisors at put me in touch with the British Gas Energy Trust Fund, I had no idea that this fund existed. Pocket Power helped me to complete the form. And what’s great is that the Trust is not only for British Gas customers, but you can also be with any provider and still get help from them. If people knew about the services available there would be less people suffering from mental distress and committing suicide”.

“From the support provided, I had £3k debt written off which seriously made me feel like a new person! It reminded me to watch where my money is going a bit more, allowing me to feel more in control.”

When asked if the service was useful and whether MTVH should carry on with the service, the resident said:

“It’s been an extremely useful service, which I’m grateful for. Debt write-off was the biggest part of it, but not the only one. Pocket Power being on the phone whilst you speak to some of these service providers helps, it’s a three-way call, you can hear how Pocket Power negotiate on your behalf. They could have done much more, like phone or broadband.”

 

Partnerships Manager, David McCormick from Pocket Power said:

“At Pocket Power we’re aware how difficult managing household bills is for so many people right now. Not only are bills going up in price, but also due to the complexity of processes involved with shopping around, signing up, switching, and accessing discounts, a vast majority of consumers are being overcharged without knowing it. Over the last 3 years, we’ve supported over 600 MTVH tenants to cut their costs on water, energy, broadband, phone and much more, saving over £175,000 collectively. Our call operators offer tailored advice, running through all bills and discounts in less than 30 mins. In addition, we offer to make applications and switches on behalf of customers to save them time and stress.”

If you are an MTVH resident or customer and you are worried about your financial situation, please contact us as soon as possible to discuss what support we can provide. You can call 0203 535 3535 and ask for the Empowering Futures team or email:  EmpoweringFutures@mtvh.co.uk