Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, this Government has provided an unprecedented package of support for individuals, families, communities and businesses who need financial help at this critical time. The Covid Local Support Grant (previously known as the Covid Winter Grant Scheme) has enabled Essex County Council to support families across the county who are struggling with the cost of food and utility bills as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic.
The scheme has run from 1st December, with a total investment of over £269m so far. Between 1st December and 16th April, Local Authorities had made almost 6.3m awards under the scheme. The Covid Local Support Grant arrangements are now being extended for a final time, with a further investment of £160m, to cover the period up to 30th September. Essex County Council will receive a further £3,612,283, making a total of £9,687,690 grant funding in total over the year.
This temporary support is being extended beyond the planned ending of restrictions, to help families get back on their feet as the economy recovers and the vaccine rollout continues.
The Covid Local Support Grant is in addition to the £220m Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) programme, which has been scaled up to cover the whole of England across the major school holidays in 2021 – including this summer. The HAF will provide disadvantaged children across the country with healthy meals and enriching activities.