Looking back: client experiences in 2022 (2)
“Nobel literature prizewinner Bob Dylan can certainly write a feeling. A few words in a famous
poem pop song* catch perfectly the kind of stress in many client experiences: “When the wind is blowing in your face and the whole world is on your case….”
CAEE Research and Campaigns Team (3 mins)
In similar vein Lisa Davis wrote recently: Our clients often feel the world is against them. They need to know our sole aim to help them find a way forward. When we looked back at clients’ stories monthly in our newsletters, we saw individuals and families all anxious about multiple complex problems.
Our last story of 2022 was typical. It spoke to the sad frequency of certain local
issues, but also the troubles of an individual human being and neighbour.
In July we began helping a young woman who was living alone. As a care leaver she had qualified for the support of a personal assistant until she was 21. Now 23 and on a low income, she was finding it hard to budget and make decisions on the road to leading an independent life.
Our August client focus was on Tom (name changed) in his 50s. Vulnerable in several ways, his paperwork was chaotic and he was behind with rent, council tax, energy and water bills. Happily we could report that over time our Adviser had helped him be more self-reliant and cope much better with his many issues.
Health issues, benefit rejection
Our September story was of a young man suffering autism and depression. He had dropped out of uni and had neither income nor work experience. His personal independence payment was rejected. With our help he succeeded at appeal: his income increased from zero to £152.15 a week and came with a backdated payment of more than £12,000.
The October client was a couple recently arrived from Ukraine. It was an understatement to say they had many problems. In addition to giving practical advice on a host of issues our Adviser’s skills in communication and building trust were vital.
We worked intensively in November with our client, his landlord and Adult Social Care to help him find a way through addiction, debt, health, relationships and employment problems. With this complexity a partnership approach was essential – and we’re happy to say proving successful with his determination to get back on track growing all the time.
Frequency of some local issues
Our last client story of 2022 in December was typical. It revealed once more the sad frequency of some local issues, but also the troubles of an individual human being and neighbour. There was debt – council tax, rent, energy bills – and poor health. We could and did help with applications for unclaimed benefits and local Energy Support. It was the start of a better phase (and happily also typical!)
* Make You Feel My Love, 1997 (Adele and many others ever since)