“I’m one of five caseworkers here at Charity Link and it’s our job to assess our referrals to decide how best we can help each client.
Today, my day starts with a case from a tenancy support worker on behalf of a young man who has been homeless for the past two years and is moving into his first independent tenancy today. Thankfully I can use our local funds to immediately provide him with a bed from our supplier and a voucher for bedding and kitchen utensils. I also submit an application to two national charities for a cooker and fridge freezer.
My next case is from a social worker requesting help for a child being bullied at school because her uniform is threadbare and outgrown. Charity Link is able to supply vouchers for a number of school uniform suppliers throughout the county so I pop some in the post with our best wishes.
I next receive a number of emergency applications. These are all for clients who have no income at all and we quickly allocate food vouchers and top up utility pre-payment cards.
The daily post arrives and brings with it cheques from the Electrical Industries Charity, Footwear Friends and Hospitality Action. These are all occupational related charities responding to applications I have submitted for clients in need of a variety of essential household items. Orders are then placed for the goods with our suppliers who will arrange delivery within the next few days.
The next application I pick up is for a lady in her 40s who suffers from Multiple Sclerosis. She is in desperate need of a specialist wheelchair but cannot afford the £7,000 cost. I spend the afternoon identifying the local and national charities that may be willing to help and submit applications to ten of them requesting contributions. I have established contacts with most of these organisations over the years and I telephone them to discuss the case. Donations will also be made from three of our in-house funds that have been set up to assist people in need of disability equipment.
It’s been a busy but rewarding day and I’m looking forward to helping more people in need tomorrow.”
Rachel Gascoigne, Caseworker at Charity Link