Brian came onto Y Futures after completing a job provided through Community Jobs Scotland. His contract had come to an end and he needed support with his job search efforts. He struggled with his literacy but was very keen to find a follow up job as quickly as possible. Our first step was to check his eligibility for Universal Credit or Job Seekers Allowance so he would get financial support whilst seeking new employment. It was at this point when the extent of the support Brian required became apparent.
Brian had claimed benefits in the past and his account was managed by a Personal Appointed Body. We were unable to make a claim with him. This delay was going to put him into arrears with his rent. We supported him to track down his PAB and did a Y-Futures Barriers Assessment with him to get a full understanding of his whole situation. Through this we discovered he was in a financial crisis that he had been hiding from.
Brian was already in arrears with his rent. He was in an unauthorised overdraft with both his bank accounts and being charged daily. He had neglected to pay his Council Tax for at least 10 months. He had neglected to keep up with payments to the Rent Deposit Scheme. He had no food and was almost down to emergency credit on his electricity meter. His landlord was ready to serve him notice to evict; He was in over £1200 in debt and ignoring all letters due to the anxiety it caused him.
We worked with Brian extensively over the next few weeks and advocated on his behalf to help him sort out his crisis. Through the Y-Futures Employability Pipeline project we were able to:
- Intervene with his Landlord and delay Notice being served whilst we supported him.
- Correspond with the Sherriff Court and Perth and Kinross Council to arrange a halt on proceedings whilst we supported him to get a payment plan in place for his Council Tax and Rent Deposit loan.
- Helped him to access the FoodBank for groceries.
- Helped him to apply for a Crisis Grant in order to get more groceries and electricity money.
- Helped him contact his PAB, and have her removed from his account so he could make a claim for Universal Credit.
- Helped him claim Universal Credit and get an advance on his first payment to get him some financial stability.
Brian is now employed fulltime and has managed to overcome his issues with debt. He completed his involvement in our project and has moved on to the next stage of his life. His story stands and a testament to how debt can have a negative impact on the lives of young people.