People at the cost of living event

Dozens of community, public, and business organisations in Coventry met together yesterday to look at how they can continue to link together to help people struggling with the cost of living.

Organisations in Coventry have been helping support people struggling to pay for things like food and bills and the rising costs of living in lots of ways.

The main message from the event was that more needs to be done to find solutions and that has to be from continued joined up working.

These have included expanding food hubs, and lots more.

Across the city, organisations are working together to train their frontline staff and to help signpost people to the correct cost of living support available.

Cost of Living - Reflecting on our One Coventry Response was hosted by the Council for partners at Coventry University. A similar event was held more than 12 months ago and since time the problems of rising costs is affecting even more people.

The event was to identify what has been achieved and to talk about ways to increase joint working.

Diane Williams, of the Coventry Food Network, said: “This not an emergency anymore, peoples’ lack of food is an ongoing problem every day.

“We have gone from having one grub hub, providing low cost food to residents, to 15 grub hubs across the city and we are also working more consistently.

“We have to buy in more food and the only way to do that is by collaborating – this keeps the costs down and the demand still out reaches supply.

“This joint working also means we are working with the Council to distribute food through the Household Support Fund.

“Compared to a year ago the grub hubs are now handing out many more food parcels to many more people.”

Cllr David Welsh, Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities, said: “I’m really proud of the way that all sorts of organisations throughout Coventry are coming together to support people in need.

“There are lots of places where residents have been helped.

“We need to continue this citywide partnership approach. We need to find solutions because this problem is not going away.

Cllr Welsh added: “The city is doing what it can, but  we must continue to pressure the government and to call on them to do more.”

Coventry’s partnership response has included the creation of an online single point of access hub for all cost of living and wellbeing related information. Lots of information about how people can get support with benefits, finances, from food hubs, details of the Household Support Fund and lots more.

This contains information about financial support with energy and housing costs, support with food, fuel and other essential items, support to households at financial risk, and information and advice on benefits, debt and housing matters, and venues open throughout the day and early evening. 

Published: Friday, 23rd June 2023