Help with cost of living

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What PIP freebies, discounts and concessions are there?

  1. Blue badge
  2. Capped water bills
  3. Council Tax discounts
  4. Disability premium
  5. Disabled Facilities Grant
  6. Discounted days out
  7. Free prescriptions
  8. Motability Scheme vehicle
  9. Toll roads
  10. Transport discounts
  11. Vehicle tax reduction

I came across this on a website and know much about this. The very act of trying to claim these are overwhelming. Some of then I won’t be able to claim like disabled facilities grant unless I can claim for a cupboard in my shower room to put all the stoma equipment which will go mouldy in the winter sitting in my shower room windowsill. I spoke to the energy people on the phone and took their advise and tried to contact the creatinggreenestcounty@suffolk.gov.uk about solar panels and grants but have been ignored. I’ve got free prescriptions. Like the fact I’d like to get a novel published I feel there is no help out there and finding the right people impossible.

  • I’ve found that most things you can claim for give false hope. They give the impression you can claim . There is always something in the eligibility that prevents being able to claim despite my recent colorectal surgery. For example I can’t apply for a grant for solar panels because I’ve got a boiler. I am way below the £36000 income and my house is drafty. During winter the average temperature according to the smart meter in my kitchen is 8 degrees c and it had dropped to 2 degrees c. Having a cancer diagnosis and I will most likely be starting a course of chemotherapy in the next month means my cold tolerance will be lower. Other things you can claim for are cruel means tested benefits. If you re got over £16000 on savings you can’t claim despite having a very low income. You are supposed to give it all to the energy companies and to the council tax which in effect is a rent on your own property.  There is no help out there and nobody cares. If I die of hypothermia this winter then so be it. I’ll just give in to it. It will be for the best and mean closure. The only thing so far is free prescriptions for five years and I might be eligible for a free bus pass. I have thought about trying to increase my income through writing but the help I need doesn’t exist because there are no schemes that will answer the questions and provide the right help I need to be successful. I have no future and just bad health to look forward to. 

  •   

    We have put your two posts together as our reply is appropriate for both. We also feel that for others reading your posts, it’s helpful to have your research and thoughts in one place.

    I am so sorry to hear about the day-to-day financial challenges you are facing, also your worries about fuel bills and keeping your property warm whilst undertaking chemotherapy treatment. You mention these challenges can become overwhelming, and I can appreciate why. It sounds as though you have undertaken a great deal of research but are finding it hard to get the support you need.

      you mention “nobody cares” at Macmillan we do care and will try our best to understand your situation and support you where we can. On an emotional level, you are welcome to keep talking to us here on the Online Community, but you are also welcome to live webchat or call us on 0808 808 0000 between 8am and 8pm on any day. You may feel a live conversation gives you an extra level of support as well as posting here.

    We also have Cancer Information Nurses should you feel you would like support during your chemotherapy. Our Nurses are available via their Online Community page: just choose the Nurse option on the Ask an Expert tab.

    You may also reach out to the Nurses via live web chat or phone on 0808 808 0000 choosing option 1 followed by option 3.

       regarding the financial queries and the challenges in your post, I feel our Welfare Rights Team are best placed to support you. They are open Monday to Friday between 8am and 8pm and Saturday and Sunday from 9am to 5pm. They are available by phone, or live web chat, but, perhaps talking to the team initially would be the best option, as they will walk you through a financial assessment, to get to know you better. They are available on 0808 808 0000 choose option 1, followed by option 2, and option 2 again.

    For many people face to face support is a welcome option, and they like to call into their nearest Cancer Center for the support they need.  The link In your Area, is a directory of cancer support services across the UK.  Popping in your postcode or town, will help you to find your nearest center offering benefits and welfare support. The search engine will also help you to find face to face emotional support, by providing a safe space to talk about how you are feeling, and the challenges that you face day to day.

       I don't wish to overwhelm you with too many options as you can always come back to us.

    Take care and I wish you all the very best.  

    Liz

    Macmillan Cancer Information and Support Advisor