More than £1.5 million is being made available to support Bexley residents in need over the winter, thanks to funding from the government.

The funding has been allocated to the Council from the Household Support Fund.

This willbe used to support around 7,859 children eligible for free school meals for February half term and the Easter holiday by providing almost £700,000 of vouchers for their families to use in supermarkets.

It will also provide an extra £718,000 to support more than 14,000 households that qualify for the Council’s Council Tax Reduction Scheme with vouchers for between £26 and £104, depending on the number of people in their household.

£100,000 in grants will also be given to local voluntary organisations to support residents.

This will include £20,000 for the local foodbank and £20,000 to provide food and essential supplies to SOLACE to support victims of domestic abuse.

A decision on the allocation of a further £60,000 will be made in the new year.

Councillor David Leaf, Deputy Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member for Resources said: “We have thought carefully about how to ensure the funding helps our most vulnerable families and giving support to those we know are already on low incomes will make a difference at this uncertain time.

“I know that many families are feeling the pinch from higher costs of living and the provision we have made will support as many people as possible over the winter with the essentials they need.”

Support to the households in receipt of the Council’s Council Tax Reduction Scheme will be rolled out in January 2022.

The funding, which has come from the Government, must be spent by March 31, 2022.

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