Hampshire Now - your County Council magazine

Providing affordable or free goods to support people during times of crisis

Monday, 16 December 2013

Hampshire County Council is working with local furniture reuse providers across the county to help vulnerable people and families who are struggling to cope to access affordable, and sometimes free, furniture, white goods and electrical items.

The Hampshire Furniture Reuse Network aims to alleviate immediate crisis and instances where families 'make do' or 'go without,' as well as reduce dependency on high cost borrowing and loan repayment schemes which often lead to financial hardship.

Organisations who support vulnerable people, help people resolve a crisis, or provide information, advice and guidance in this area are encouraged to contact the County Council to discuss how they can access the Network for their customers and clients.

Councillor Liz Fairhurst, Hampshire County Council's Executive Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health, said: "The Network is an excellent way of helping people access affordable, high-quality, essential and desirable items during times of hardship and to reduce their dependency on taking out loans.

"Organisations who provide support to vulnerable people are encouraged to get in touch to find out how they can access the Network to support individuals and families they work with. Residents can also donate their unwanted items to the Network."

The Network has positive social and environmental impacts. By reusing an item of furniture, the energy associated with manufacturing a new one or recycling it is saved and it also helps to reduce fly tipping. In addition, the scheme helps strengthen the Hampshire economy by using local organisations who employ local people.

Hampshire has developed the Network using its Local Welfare Assistance - funding from the Government's Department for Work and Pensions to develop local help and support for people who are struggling to cope beyond the remit of current social and health care statutory services support. The scheme ensures the funding the County Council receives reaches more households in need from organisations who can also provide on-going support or advice to reduce the likelihood of future crisis.

For more information about the Hampshire Furniture Reuse Network and to donate an item of furniture or an electrical or white good, as well as finding out about a collection or drop off location, visit Hampshire Furniture Reuse Network.

For organisations who would like to get involved with the Network, call 01962 847218 or email dan.stoneman@hants.gov.uk

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