Last autumn, the Messenger reported that a number of local groups were working together to encourage more pensioners in Burngreave to claim Pension Credit. So what impact did this make?
We reckon that just under 100 people called in either to Pitsmoor CAB, Pakistan Advice Centre and Age Concern Sheffield about getting Pension Credit. We reckon that another 70 people phoned the advice agencies. Sometimes this was to check that what they were already receiving was right; sometimes because they had been told they weren’t eligible; sometimes to arrange an appointment for a benefit check.
Forty-six people attended one of the five outreach sessions. Twenty-one new Pension Credit claims have been made. A typical example of this is Age Concern Sheffield assisted with a claim giving an award of £36.75 a week, plus back dated payment of £2,276 and Council Tax Benefit of £21.29 a week. Howard Golding from Pitsmoor CAB says: “It’s very hard to say exactly how much additional income this campaign has raised for local elders, but it’s probably well over £20,000 extra annual income from claims that this bureau alone has handled. We need to learn the hard lessons of how we did this and make sure that as local workers, we don’t forget”.
Gina Brumby from Age Concern Sheffield said: “We were really pleased to be able to work together with other organisations in the Burngreave and Firvale area to support this campaign. The outreach sessions were invaluable in taking the message into the local neighbourhoods.” A final word from Gulnaz Hussain from Pakistan Advice: “Working together this community has organisations that can assist older people in claiming what they’re entitled to. Many of our elders have worked hard in this city and it’s only right that they get every penny that they deserve.”
by Andy Shallice