Cost of Living
Employee Support

Due to the rise in the national cost of living and the increasing cost of food and bills, we’re aware of the mental health and financial impact this may have on many people. To support Radis employees we have collated some resources which may be helpful during these difficult times.

Please note, apart from the Care Workers Charity, Radis has no links or partnerships with any of the organisations, charities or websites listed below. We are informing you of these resources as you may find them helpful. Please ensure you undertake your own research also.

Radis’ Hardship Fund is working in partnership with

Employee Benefits

WeCare

Access WeCare, an online platform available to Radis employees, which offers a wide variety of health and wellbeing services, including financial guidance – click here for the WeCare website.

“Understand your finances and improve your financial wellbeing. Talk to our financial experts and get guidance on a range of financial issues including reducing your outgoings, budgeting advice and financial education, advice on reducing energy bills, trust funds, energy switching, reducing usage, advice on priority debts versus non-priority debts”.

Blue Light Card

As a Radis employee, you are entitled to register with Blue Light Card, the UK’s largest discount service for people working in the social care sector.

For a £4.99 fee, members of the Blue Light Card community can register for two years access to more than 15,000 discounts. There is a wide variety of discounts available, from leading businesses including Starbucks, New Look, Apple, Cineworld, Alton Towers, and many more.There is also the opportunity for Blue Light Card members to join exclusive competitions on social media.

To apply for a Blue Light Card, you follow these steps:

  1. Visit the website here. 
  2. Click ‘Register’.
  3. Select ‘Social Care’ as your service.
  4. Select ‘Care Company (workforce)’ and input your personal details.
  5. You will then receive a verification email. Click on this to activate your account.
  6. Log into your account, go to ‘My card’ and complete the required details.
  7. Provide proof of your employment with Radis (a document showing your name, job role, and employer name).
  8. Pay the £4.99 fee.
  9. Your Blue Light Card will be posted to your home address and a digital version will be available on the free Blue Light Card app (available from the App Store and Google Play Store).

Financial Support with household bills

Please see below some resources which offer financial support with household bills.

Check if you can get extra help or money

You might be able to claim benefits or increase your current benefits if you’re:

  • struggling to afford essential things – such as food and housing
  • sick or disabled
  • not working
  • working and on a low income
  • a pensioner on a low income
  • a carer
  • responsible for children

It’s important to check if you can get extra help or support, even if you’re working. Check what benefits you can get.

Check what help you can get from your local council

You can contact your local council – they might help you pay for things like:

  • your energy and water bills
  • food
  • essential items – for example clothes or an oven

This help is known as ‘welfare assistance’ or the ‘Household Support Fund’. Each council runs their own scheme. The help they offer and who can get it varies. Ask your local council if they run a welfare assistance or Household Support Fund scheme. You can find out how to contact your local council on GOV.UK.

You don’t have to be getting benefits to get help from your local council. If you do get benefits, they won’t be affected if you start getting money from a welfare assistance or Household Support Fund scheme.

Check what help you can get with your bills

Contact the organisations or people you owe money to. They might agree to help by doing things like:

  • reducing your payments
  • giving you more time to pay

Each organisation is different so it’s important to check what help you could get. If you’ve borrowed money and are struggling with the cost of living, ask your lender for support. They should:

  • give you advice based on your individual situation
  • reduce fees and charges

You should start by trying to sort out problems with your energy bills, council tax or housing costs. These are more urgent than things like credit cards or loans.

Get help with your energy bills

The government has put a limit for most households on the rates your supplier can charge you for gas and electricity. This is called the Energy Price Guarantee.

You don’t need to do anything. The Energy Price Guarantee automatically applies to all types of energy tariffs. It starts from 1 October 2022 and lasts until 31 March 2023. There’ll still be a limit after March 2023 – but the amount you pay for energy will go up.

If you’re still struggling to pay your bills you should contact your energy supplier. Your supplier has to help you find a solution. Talk to them about a payment plan that works for you – this means making payments you can afford over a fixed period of time.

If you don’t try to agree a plan with your supplier, they might say they’ll disconnect you.

If you’ve got a prepayment meter and you don’t top it up, your energy supply might stop. Check what to do if you can’t afford to top up your prepayment meter.

Grants to help you pay off energy debts 

If you’re in debt to your energy supplier, you may be eligible for a grant to help pay it off.

The following energy suppliers offer grants to their customers:

If your supplier isn’t listed it’s a good idea to contact them directly to see what extra support they can give you.

If you can’t get a grant from your supplier, you might be able to get a grant from the British Gas Energy Trust. These grants are available to anyone – you don’t have to be a British Gas customer, however you’ll need to get debt advice before applying from one of the following companies:

Citizens Advice (Debt / Benefits / Energy Advice)  Tel : 08007022020

Step Change (Debt Advice) Tel:  0800 138 1111
Monday to Friday 8am to 8pm and Saturday 8am to 4pm
Online debt advice service
 – Available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year

National Debt Line Tel:  0808 808 4000 or webchat with an adviser

Monday to Friday: 9am – 8pm, Saturday: 9:30am -1pm


If you’ve already spoken to a debt adviser – check if you can get a grant from the British Gas Energy Trust
.

Check if you can apply for grants and schemes

You might be able to apply for grants and schemes to help you pay your bills if any of the following apply:

Take a look at the list from Citizens Advice on grants and benefits to help you pay your energy bills here.

Get help paying your rent

If you can’t pay your rent, explain the situation to your landlord straight away. They might give you more time to pay. You might be able to get benefits to help with your rent, for example Universal Credit or Housing Benefit. You’ll usually get Universal Credit if you’re under State Pension age. You’ll usually get Housing Benefit if you’re over State Pension age.

If you’re already getting Housing Benefit or Universal Credit

If Housing Benefit or Universal Credit doesn’t cover all your rent, you can apply for a discretionary housing payment (DHP). A DHP is extra money from your local council to help pay your rent.

You need to be receiving Housing Benefit or the housing costs part of Universal Credit to get a DHP.

Contact your local council and ask how to apply for a DHP. You might have to apply by phone or online. You can find out how to contact your local council on GOV.UK.

When you apply, explain why you need a DHP. For example, you should tell them:

  • why you can’t afford to pay the rent
  • why you can’t move somewhere cheaper
  • if it’s causing problems for someone you look after, like a child or elderly relative
  • if you have a disability and how this makes it more difficult to pay

You’ll need to send any evidence you have, for example a letter from your doctor or details of debts you’re paying off. It’s a good idea to keep a copy of your application. For example, you can take photos of your paper form or print a copy of an online application. Your local council will decide whether to give you a DHP  – it depends on your situation. If the council decide to give you a DHP, they’ll write to tell you:

  • how much you’ll get
  • when the DHP will stop

If you still need a DHP after it ends, you can apply again.

If you’re thinking about borrowing money to pay your bills

It’s usually more expensive to take out a loan – you’ll have to pay extra costs like interest. You should first contact the organisations you need to pay. You might be able to agree a plan to help pay the money you owe. If you decide to take out a loan, you should:

If the lender isn’t on the FCA register

If they’re not on the register, don’t borrow money from them. A lender that isn’t on the register might want to charge high interest rates or expensive fees. They might ask to take things like your passport, or a bank card as security for the loan – they’re not allowed to use these things as security. These lenders are often called ‘loan sharks’. You can report loan sharks on the Stop Loan Sharks website.

Childcare Support

Tax free childcare

Tax free childcare – get up up to £500 every 3 months (up to £2,000 a year) for each of your children to help with the costs of childcare.

You can use this to pay for childminders, nurseries, after school clubs and play schemes.

Find out more and the eligibility criteria here.

Working families in England with 3 and 4 year old children

Working families in England with 3 and 4 year old children can receive 30 hours of free childcare a week.

Find out more and check if you are eligible here.

Money Saving Tips and Websites

There are a number of websites and apps which provide food at a reduced price, help on where to find the lowest petrol prices and information which could help save money.

Food at reduced prices / food banks

To good to Go

Too Good To Go are on a mission to reduce food waste, and have a mobile app which lets you ‘rescue unsold food’ at your favourite shops and restaurants at a reduced cost. Download the app here to explore the shops and restaurants in your local area.

Community Grocery

Community Grocery is a cross between food banks and supermarkets and allows members to shop for less. There are 21 Community Groceries across the UK supporting families, and they also offer courses in cooking, how to manage money and budgets, life skills and debt advice.

Your Local Pantry

Your Local Pantry runs pantries across the UK which stock food including fruit and veg. After paying a subscription fee, members can choose groceries from their local pantry to save money on shopping bills. Your Local Pantry also encourage communities to come together and thrive. Find out if there is a pantry near you here.

Money Saving Expert

Take a look at how to get cheap or free food, save on your bills or at restaurants with tips from Money Saving Expert here.

Food Banks

Food banks are community organisations which help people by providing emergency food and support. The largest network of food banks in the UK is run by The Trussel Trust.

The Trusseell Trust is a registered charity with a network of over 1,300 food banks across the UK, who provide emergency food and support to those who need it. In order to get support from the food banks, you must be referred from a professional such as a doctor, health visitor or social worker who issue food vouchers to those who need emergency food. Find out more here.

Help with travel

Petrol Prices
The Petrol Prices app finds and compares petrol prices in your area to save money on fuel. According to the Petrol Prices website, the average member saved £200 on petrol and diesel. Download the app here.

Railway card
You may be able to buy a railcard for upto 1/3 off selected rail fares, take a look at the rail cards available here.

How to save fuel
Plan your journey ahead of time and consider other ways of travelling, such as walking, cycling or the bus to reduce fuel usage. If you need to drive, take a look at RAC top tips on how to save fuel here.

Household items

Company Shop

Company Shop Group is a redistributor of surplus food and household goods, and aim to reduce waste. Find out more here.

Olio

Olio is an app that lets you pass on what you no longer need to people who live nearby and is place where you can find what you might need at no cost. The app aims to help local people and the planet by reducing waste to landfill. People in your area could be giving away surplus food, clothes or home items. Find out more here.

Top Cash Back

With over 5,000 retailers, find cash back rates on anything from mobile phones, to fashion and homeware brands. Take a look at the cashback website here.

Magic Freebies

Magic Freebies website offers links to free products from dog food to skin care. You can check out their website here.

Other financial support

The Care Workers' Charity

The Care Worker’s Charity supports those in the sector experiencing financial hardship, please reach out to them to find out if they’re able to help you with additional support or funding. Find out more here.

Radis Hardship Fund

We’re delighted to inform you about the Radis Hardship Fund which we have established to support employees who have experienced a recent change in circumstances resulting in a significant financial impact.

We are working in partnership with The Care Workers’ Charity who will be administering the fund on Radis’ behalf.  Applications for funding will be submitted directly to The Care Worker’s Charity who will assess them and decide whether or not to award a grant.

Please read all of the information on this page to find out more about applying for a grant.

Turn2Us

Turn2us is a charity that we are aware of which has a ‘Benefits Calculator’ and ‘Grants Search’ tool on it’s website. Radis has no links to this charity, we are telling you about it as you may find it useful.

Their tools are designed in collaboration with their service users and kept up to date by their in-house benefits specialists to reflect all legislative changes.

They are free to use and anonymous.  There is no need to create a user account or share your personal data with third parties.

Visit the Turn2us website here.

Mental Health Support

Charities and organisations that can offer mental health support

Mind Charity
If you are in crisis, want to learn more about specific topics or to get in touch with Mind’s confidential Infoline or Legal line click here.

NHS
Find local mental health services, charities, therapy and counseling services, or the urgent mental health helpline here.

Samaritans
You can call Samaritans any time throughout the day or night, email, download their app, or start a live chat with Samaritans here.

Free WeCare service for employees

Access WeCare, an online platform available to Radis employees, which offers a wide variety of health and wellbeing services, including financial guidance – click here for the WeCare website.

“Understand your finances and improve your financial wellbeing. Talk to our financial experts and get guidance on a range of financial issues including reducing your outgoings, budgeting advice and financial education, advice on reducing energy bills, trust funds, energy switching, reducing usage, advice on priority debts versus non-priority debts”.