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New charity partnership to help relieve poverty in Paston

A new advisory service has been launched by Spurgeons Children’s Charity and Citizens Advice Peterborough (CAP) to help reduce poverty in Paston.

The new initative is based at Spurgeons Honeyhill Children’s Centre in Paston. A CAP outreach advisor will be available between 8.30 – 3pm, Monday to Friday. It is part of a 12 month pilot programme to make advice more accessible for people living in the area, to help resolve problems before they reach crisis point.

Child poverty and deprivation in Peterborough is higher overall than in England, with Paston scoring high on the city’s child poverty index at 34.4 per cent against an overall average of 19.36 per cent. Paston also features in the top five wards for low income and suffers from a lack of employment, poor health and barriers to housing.

Jason Wilson, Service Manager at Honeyhill said: “The role has been created for people in the Paston area to get advice on their doorstep so that CAP can help resolve issues quickly. Honeyhill is perfectly situated to reach families who have difficulty with transport getting into the CAP in the city centre as they have small children and limited incomes”.

The main issues affecting people in Paston include high levels of debt, access to housing, jobs and the need for help in understand their benefit entitlements.

Spurgeons Chief Executive Ross Hendry said: “The UK is seeing unacceptable and growing levels of child poverty, with over 3.9 million children living below the poverty line. I welcome this innovative partnership with Citizens Advice at Honeyhill that’s helping to create a hub in the Paston area, providing vital and accessible support for local families to help lift them out of poverty”.

The Citizens Advice outreach programme will complement Spurgeons existing partnership work in Honeyhill, including Together for Families. Funded by the Diocese of Peterborough, the project provides dedicated staff to support local churches in their community work with children, young people and their families.

Keith Jones, Chief Executive of Citizens Advice Peterborough said: “Citizens Advice Peterborough is delighted to be working in partnership with Honeyhill Children’s Centre to help local people find a way forward.

“Citizens Advice provides free, confidential and independent advice to help people overcome their problems and also to act as a voice for service users and consumers on the issues that matter to them.

“We are keen to see that local people receive all the money they are entitled to; we can check entitlement to benefits and tax credits to boost family income. We can also help if people are struggling to pay rent or other debts and make sure that individuals can stay in their home.

“No problem is too big or small, we help with everything from money issues to problems at work, housing to consumer rights; we are here at Honeyhill to provide support for everyone who needs our help”.

To contact the Citizen’s Advice Bureau’s advisor at Honeyhill call Sue Sharman on: 01733 577611