Decision details

Household Support Fund - May Allocation

Decision Maker: Executive Member for Children, Young People & Learning

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: Yes

Purpose:

To agree the distribution for the Household Support Fund during the interim May 2022 period, until the full plan for distribution is agreed.

Decision:

       i.         the purchase of supermarket vouchers for all Free School Meal (FSM) eligible children attending Bracknell Forest Schools, including equivalent under-fives living in the borough at the value of £15 per child, per week, for one week of May Half Term holidays is approved.

 

     ii.         the purchase of supermarket vouchers, or direct payment to schools as pre-agree (using approximately £42,000 of funding) through the existing contract holder Blackhawk incentives is approved.

Reasons for the decision:

1.     The council was notified of the extension to the Household Support fund on 1 April 2022. The vouchers must be purchased urgently to be received by families before the May Half Term (30 May – 3 June). These recommendations allow the council to extend the previous offer of school holiday vouchers to the same cohort of children, using the same process as before, working closely with schools and early years settings. It is expected that these vouchers will support food costs for around 2,800 children.

 

2.     Full proposals for the Household Support Fund will be discussed and presented to Executive in May. However, this would not be in time for the May half term period, hence the Executive Member decision requested here

Alternative options considered:

The funding provided does not have to be used for May half term vouchers, although there are specific conditions that the distribution of funding must meet including at least one third of the funding being allocated to families with children. Therefore, if these recommendations are refused, an alternative proposal could be developed. However, in considering all the options for previous tranches of this funding since December 2020, it was agreed that supermarket vouchers over the school holiday would be a suitable use.

Interests and Nature of Interests Declared:

None

Reason Key: Affects more than 1 ward;

Wards Affected: (All Wards);

Financial Impact: Included within report

Declarations: None

Subject to Urgent Proceedings: yes

Making Representations: In writing to the Chief Executive

Contact: Katie Flint Email: katie.flint@bracknell-forest.gov.uk, Sharon Warner, Head of Housing and Benefits Email: sharon.warner@bracknell-forest.gov.uk.

Urgent item?: Yes

Publication date: 04/05/2022

Date of decision: 04/05/2022

Effective from: 12/05/2022

Accompanying Documents: