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Covid-19

Money: Ways we can support your financial wellbeing

We know that access to money is many women’s most urgent need right now. CLiCK is a member of the Encompass Network, who have been pushing for funding to support women’s financial wellbeing. Encompass applied for funding from the Scottish Government’s immediate priorities fund 2020-21 to be able to increase support and offer financial help to women. Women who sell or exchange sex or images can now access two separate funds: 1) Victim Support Scotland’s ‘Victim Fund’, and 2) The Encompass Fund.

CLiCK Women’s Workers are available via our live chat, helpline (0300 124 5564), and one-to-one support to help you access these funds.

Victim Fund

What is it?

Victim Support Scotland is administering a £100k fund – the ‘Victim Fund’ – to support people impacted by crime. Encompass worked with Victim Support Scotland to ensure that women involved in selling or exchanging sex or images are now eligible to access this fund.

What help can I get?

You may be able to access up to a maximum of £3000 in financial assistance to support you with essentials like paying utility bills, paying for food, personal items, and replacements for damaged property or furniture.

How can I access this fund?

You can make an application yourself or with support from an Encompass service, like CLiCK, or other organisations like Umbrella Lane. You do not need a crime number to access this fund. When applying, you will need to provide evidence (e.g. invoices/bills) to be attached to the application. It is not possible to remain anonymous when accessing the Victim Fund. The reason for this is that Victim Support Scotland need to know who the applicant is to guard against organisations submitting applications and keeping the money for themselves. Most Victim Fund payments are to suppliers (e.g. energy companies) and so Victim Support Scotland need to know who they are paying on behalf of. Information included on Victim Fund applications is not shared in a way that could identify individuals.

 

 

CLiCK Women’s Worker Zoe has recently helped a woman access the Victim Fund alongside local support to cover energy costs. Here’s what she had to say about the process:

A woman got in touch as she was needing support with the cost of day-to-day living due to the impact of coronavirus. To help with energy costs, we applied to a local energy charity who were able to support the woman by quickly topping up both meters. To cover food costs, we discussed the Victim Fund together and decided to apply - the woman will now receive £300 worth of food vouchers.


Encompass Fund

What is it?

The Encompass Network have secured a small amount of money from the Scottish Government to offer destitution funds in local areas. The Encompass Network is only funded to provide this support for a limited amount of time and applications must be received before the end of August 2020.

What help can I get?

The Encompass Fund can provide a range of support, including: payment of utility bills, access to technology/smart phones, appliance repairs or replacement of appliances, and assistance with food.

How can I access this fund?

You should contact an Encompass Network service - like CLiCK - to access this fund or external organisations can link with Encompass services on your behalf. The fund is open to any woman in Scotland who is over 18, been selling or exchanging sex, and is in financial difficulty as a result of coronavirus. Applications must be endorsed and submitted by a member of staff with an Encompass Network service. There is no expectation that women must continue to receive support via Encompass or that women will agree to exit in order to access this financial support.

 

 

Jenna, a woman’s worker at Vice Versa, has been supporting women to access the Encompass Fund. Here’s what she had to say about the process:

I have been working with a woman to get her debts and loans down as low as possible – but she was still struggling to cover her direct debits. We used the Encompass Fund to access a weekly payment which covers her direct debits and ultimately means she is not under that stress every week.

I have also been working with a woman who has been forced to exit from street prostitution due to coronavirus and lack of punters. Although she receives Universal Credit, it was not going far enough for her and she was struggling to pay her service charge for her accommodation. We used the destitution fund to cover her rent which means we can now focus on supporting her other needs, too.


If you would like to find out more about the Victim Fund or Encompass Fund, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Our CLiCK Women’s Workers are available on live chat, our helpline (0300 124 5564), and through one-to-one support to answer any questions you might have. We’re here to help you find financial support that works for you.

 

CHAT TIMES

MONDAY: 11am-1pm & 4pm-6pm

TUESDAY: 11am-1pm & 4pm-6pm

WEDNESDAY: 3pm-7pm

THURSDAY: 11am-1pm & 3pm-7pm

FRIDAY: 11pm-4pm

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HELPLINE TIMES - Call 0300 124 5564

Tuesday: 3pm-5pm

Wednesday: 11am-7pm

Thursday: 6pm-9pm

Saturday: 12pm-2pm

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