£400k fund for needy

MORE than £400,000 has been allocated by the Scottish Government to help people in need in the Borders, writes Adam Drummond.

Scottish Borders Council has been awarded £406,547 through the newly-created Scottish Welfare Fund to help the disabled, elderly, lone parents and other vulnerable groups facing a financial crisis and in need of short-term help.

Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced the funding on Friday.

She said: “It is absolutely imperative that vulnerable people in Scotland are protected and cared for during these tough economic times.”

The council’s head of customer services, Jenni Craig, said: “From April 2013 parts of the existing social fund will be replaced by the Scottish Welfare Fund and people who are on income-related benefits who find themselves in a crisis situation will be able to apply to the council for a crisis grant.

“Similarly, people who are in care or at risk of being taken into care can get help with the cost of moving into or remaining in the community by applying for a community care grant.”