Spoken by some of those working to help widowed in need suceed
"After arriving back in the UK, with nothing but a suitcase of clothes, I had to
surrvive on the charity of my family for food, shelter and clothes for me and
my then, two year old son. I was offered a run down house as a home for my son
and I; With no money for improvments we were very fortunate for the charity
offered by strangers in my comunity. People I did not know came to help
decorate, move furniture and even gave money for paint, etc. Without the help
of these people we would not have been able to move in.
My inheritacne from my hubby's estate was less than £7000 (arriving a year
later) and recovering from a broken arm and a preschooler, finding work was not
really an option.
I do think if my story wasnt so shocking the help would have been far
less; Which is why charities like this are vital, regardless of how we became
"When my fiance passed away he died only with debts. We had been living on his
ESA and the child benefit of arround £30 a week for the kids.
I needed to apply for child tax credits for both kids, but it had been the last thing on my mind
as I had given birth to my son in May. We had moved in together properly in
June (we had been kind of living together a while but most of mine and my
daughters stuff was still at my house) and then for the remainder of June my
fiance was constently throwing up, in a lot of pain and in and out of hospital.
My son also had colic and never slept and then in July my fiance was diagnosed
with terminal cancer. I spent most of July and August in the hospital with
him ( he had a private room so I was able to stay all day and night if I
wanted). He passed away at the end of August and I just could not cope at all!
I had to go straight back to our house we had shared and try to cope with mine
and my daughters grief, a four month old that barely slept and screamed
constantly and a house that was falling to bits and full of boxes. I then found
I was left with the £30 a week child benefit to live on as the ESA was stopped
a week after he died. I got help to apply for tax credits a couple of weeks
later as my head was not in the right place at all! It took almost three months
for them to finally sort tax credits, so for those few months me and the kids
were trying to cope on £30 a week, which when you have to pay for food,
gas,electric, water, tv license,travel costs, school costs, etc etc doesn't
exactly go far! Thankfully I had a little help from someone at the childrens
centre who managed to get me three lots of food from the food bank in that
time (which is all you are allowed in a year I think?) but that meant we were
having to make food that was only meant to last three to four days, last nearly
a month. Thankfully I didnt have to pay out for funeral costs as his sister was
in a better situation, so covered that. I also had to reaply for housing benefit
as we had had a joint claim. So while waiting for that I ended up racking up a
month and a halfs worth of rent arears, as well as the £15 a week bedroom tax I
should of been paying"
"Going from a fulltime wage coming into suddenly having no income I had no idea
what to do, who to turn to for help I had no friends or family to ask for
financial help. Having to apply for finacial help from the goverment is a
lengthly process in the meantime how are people suppose to cope? There should
be somewhere to turn to for help even short term help to buy essential things
"I went on maternity leave. I was on a full time wage and had worked with my employer for eight years. My Fiance died in his sleep suddenly two weeks after our son was born. My employer was very supportive and I was able to claim my maternity but had to leave my job. My son is now 2 years old. I am unable to work, due to my son not being able to attend nursery full time as he has special needs. All we live off is £130 a fortnight from income support and £80 a week which is child benefit and child tax credit. That's it. It is depressing, degrading and hard work to make ends meet. What was meant to be the happiest moment in our lives has become a time of struggle. Not to mention loosing our home. Not being entitled to any help because we were not married. It leaves me questioning the system. There is no support out there for people like me"
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