Thursday, July 21, 2016
A benefit take-up campaign in Preston has left 46 people, aged 75 and over, better off by almost £279,000 a year in total.
The campaign was organised by Lancashire County Council's Welfare Rights Service, in partnership with Preston City Council.
The city council used their records to identify over-75s in their area. They then sent out a letter inviting people to apply for a free and confidential benefits check.
With the help of welfare rights officers, those households who were missing out on benefits they were entitled to have secured an average of an extra £102 per week each.
County Councillor Azhar Ali, cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: "This is great news for older people in Preston, who have had a welcome boost to their incomes.
"As well as the hard-working staff of our Welfare Rights Service, I'd also like to thank our partners at Preston City Council for their help in making this campaign such a success.
"The Welfare Rights Service has been running these campaigns very successfully for many years now. I would urge older people to get in touch and ask for a free and confidential benefits check.
"As we have seen in the Preston campaign and elsewhere, it really could make all the difference."
Councillor Matthew Brown, Preston City Council's cabinet member for social justice, inclusion and policy, said: “The partnership working between both councils for the benefit of our community has increased the income of some of our elderly residents in the city.
"Our teams managed to secure an extra £270.20 a week for one person. A significant amount that the resident didn't even know they were entitled to have."
People wanting a free and confidential benefit check can phone the Welfare Rights Service on 0300 123 6739 or email firstname.lastname@example.org