MORE than £25,000 worth of food parcels are set to be handed out across East Lancashire as part of a new crisis loans system.
Major changes are already in the pipeline for hardship payments for some of the county’s neediest families from April 1.
The Lancashire Telegraph revealed last month that the budget for the new social fund – now known as the Care and Urgent Needs Support Scheme – will be slashed by around a third.
Now Community Solutions, which has bases in Accrington and Burnley, are set to deliver urgent food supplies to the worst-off in East Lancashire.
Bosses at the social enterprise have approached the county council, offering to provide the hand-outs, for those at serious risk of going hungry.
CS already operates food bank services in Hyndburn and Burnley.
In a report, deputy county treasurer George Graham said: “CS has indicated it would be willing to deliver the services necessary to meet the need for essential living expenses by way of a package of support for every person referred to them via the new scheme.”
The likes of Hyndburn Used Furniture and the Prospects Foundation in Accrington, Rossendale’s Agapao and Proffitt’s, Age UK, Open Door in Burnley and Whalley’s Stable Trading will be enlisted to supply essential homeware.
County bosses have said they are keen to offer items or provisions, as opposed to cash payments, as part of the process. Only two applications per year will usually be considered.
Government officials are eager for social fund provisions to be administered at a local level – but have provided significantly less funds to do so than last year.