Please review the funded projects under the grant theme Living with Long Term Challenges.

We are always looking to receive applications which use memorable, innovative, and or creative ways of delivering financial life skills which will make a lasting impact on the way people think, behave and manage their money.

Check out what the Trustees and the Grant Advisory Panel particularly liked about the projects featured.

Bute Advice Centre is a registered Scottish charity, and has been supporting the local island community for over 30 years. They help the most vulnerable members of their community to fight poverty and social exclusion by the provision of impartial, confidential advice and assistance.

Our funding enabled Bute Advice Centre (BAC) to deliver financial capability focused community talks through local radio and various community group workshops. Following on from these activities BAC were able to support 52 individuals who were living with long term conditions on a one to one basis, reaching new residents to the island and those who had not used their service before.

The beneficiaries developed a greater understanding of how money impacts their lives and how they can feel more empowered to take control of the situation even when the budget is very tight. The majority of beneficiaries felt more informed, understood the risks of borrowing, and had an increased understanding of how the banking system works. Where debts existed they felt better able to engage with their creditors in the future. Beneficiaries’ mental health improved significantly, feeling less stressed and isolated was a huge improved outcome for them.

One particular challenge this project found was attitudes to ill-health. When supporting clients to maximise their income, often the clients would minimise their conditions. It was only when a close relationship was formed that advisers could scratch below the surface and gain a true picture of how badly the clients disability was affecting them. When this true picture was revealed it helped the client and their adviser to complete the disability benefit applications more robustly and resulted in greater awards.

We particularly liked Bute Advice Centre's ability to deliver and improve both personal financial capability and mental health outcomes for their clients.

Headway Portsmouth & South East Hampshire is a registered charity offering support, advice and information to local people with brain injury and other forms of acquired brain injury; their family members, carers and interested professionals. They have been delivering services in the Portsmouth and South East Hampshire area since 1986.

This project initially delivered basic financial awareness training to 20 people who live with the long term effects of brain injury. This helped them on their journey to reduce their vulnerability and improve their independence. Two financial awareness courses (comprising of 6 x 2 hour sessions) for ten service users at each were delivered. Follow up one to one work in conjunction with other family members was necessary in most cases. Referrals to other agencies such as VOS (Veteran’s Outreach Support), CAP (Christians Against Poverty) were made, and to Headway’s in-house courses; Confidence Building after Brain Injury and their Cognitive Rehabilitation programme to help them cope on a different level.

A brain injury often strikes people suddenly when they are in the midst of working with large incomes and large outgoings. It is hard to adjust to such an abrupt change. As a result of the training, each person was more aware of their financial position. For some this meant facing frightening situations re their lack of income which they had been avoiding. One person was actually waiting for someone from the government to call and tell him what to do. For some this was a relief as they knew where they stood. For some it meant that they also came to terms with what a brain injury was and accepted it as a life changing event. For some there was no understanding of their financial position but it helped their families and carers to see that and put in place strategies to help.

We particularly liked how Headway Portsmouth's project is a sound reminder that financial capability is important for everyone, whatever their level of ability, especially when circumstances suddenly change.

Is an independent registered charity based in Norwich. They have been providing a range of communication and information services for the deaf community in Norfolk since 1997.

Our funding enabled Deaf Connexions to deliver 6 workshops, a 10 week course (2 hrs /session) delivered by a deaf advocate to 8 people, plus 10 hours of 1:1 personal finance support sessions to course beneficiaries. 35 people directly benefitted. All of the support was delivered through British Sign Language (BSL) and with the help of visual resources, to ensure that deaf people had full access.

Training included, banking/credit cards, how to budget and plan, how to keep money safe, awareness of scams, and where to get help. Outcomes delivered were increased financial confidence, enhanced self-esteem, less dependence on family members and need for support services.

We particularly liked Deaf Connexions' combination of teaching and one to one support geared to a group of people with specific needs.

Pembrokeshire People First (PPF) is an independent member-led charity run by and for adults with learning disabilities and/ or autism. They focus on developing skills, resilience, and independence. They do this through: Advocacy, Training, Groups and Campaigning.

We funded the delivery of 30 Money Management Sessions, to 29 members. PPF Finance Champions were recruited and trained to take a lead in supporting fellow members to create two micro enterprises.

Specialist support sessions were delivered by the Barclays Money Skills Team and the Finance Resilience Co-ordinator from the local CAB. The activities increased members' confidence in money skills, understanding of benefit work rules such as 'permitted hours' and increased independence for two members to move in to their own self contained flat.

We particularly liked that this Pembrokeshire People First project collaborated with other organisations to deliver the specialist support sessions.