"Marks money saving tips"
BEE-mused The Small Print Any work submitted must be your own original material. All original contributions remain the intellectual property of the contributor, no item in whole or in part may be used January 2009 edition the community wellbeing members newsletter elsewhere without consent. the newsletter that’s written by members for members Views expressed by contributors are not necessarily those of Mind or the editorial team. The editorial team reserve the right to edit items submitted. If you would like a full guide to FINDING A PATH THROUGH submitting contributions please see ‘Bare-Bones’ issue 1, or contact us for a copy. THE BENEFITS MINEFIELD We would like to help you get your ideas into print in your newsletter, so don’t delay, talk to us at group activities or get it touch at... Community Wellbeing Team 215 High Street Marks Williams trip Smethwick West Midlands money to Norway B66 3AH Telephone:0121 565 2788 saving Email: email@example.com tips Not only, but also… A big “thank you” to our valued contributors; William, Adrian, Parminder, Heather, Mark, , Lee, Marek Mike Also, to those responsible for the initial editorial input. If you would like to help with future newsletters, get in touch! Mike’s Potted Historys Contents: Edition 12 January 09 Richard 2, came to the throne in Caroline of Brunswick. She bore 1377 to 1399. He was the grandson him a daughter, Charlotte, who Page 3 of Edward 3, who’s mother Isa- would have been queen,. She sadly Domestic violence strategy event belle of France, wife of Edward 2, died in childbirth, and the child who murdered Edward at a castle did not survive. Page 4 Benefits—finding a path in Gloucestershire, with her lover In George 4 reign John Peel set up Roger Mortimer, raised an army in the police force in 1829. Catholics Page 5 through the minefield. France to put Edward 3, her son on were also allowed to be members the throne. He was a child when he of parliament. came to the throne and his Page 6 mother, Isabella, and her lover had control over him, when Edward was Page 7 Marks money saving tips grown up he took control from his mother and her lover. He punished them for deposing his father Ed- Page 9 Williams trip to Norway ward 2. Her lover was executed and he imprisoned his mother Isa- Page 10 bel for the rest of her life. William 4 was next to take the Richard 2 kept a piece of rag on throne, he was George 4ths Page 11 Mike’s Potted History’s his person to wipe his nose, a younger brother. William had courtier made a handkerchief for served in the navy. William mar- him. This is how the handkerchief ried Adelaide of Saxes Meinger; Page 12 The Small Print was invented. she introduced the Christmas tree BREAD to Britain. John Peel was made George 4 who was Prince Regent to Prime minister for a term. In 1833 How simple a piece of bread can be. Crumbs, how did this come to my his father George 3, because of slavery was abolished for children How rich it is and more than life it be. head? his mental health problems for of nine and under, and women and Together it brings us sharingly. I’m hungry, and many years before he became king. older children were given right’s When shared this bread most will- That’s what led ingly, To this. He was married to a catholic Mrs which bill Peel, put thru the parlia- Bring us together fillingly. A simple piece of bread Fitzherbert first when he was re- ment. In 1834, workhouses for the That gives us strength for the life gent. His father George 3 talked poor were set up or invented. Marek Bartosek 27/09/08 ahead. him into annulling the marriage, encouraging him to marry Princess More to follow... 2 11 Domestic Violence Strategy Event I am always attending events at events at the moment. But the one I at- tended yesterday was good. Because it was domestic violence. The out- come was good. Because it was how you can deal with men who come across with domestic abuse. If they intend to harm you in any way. Why would men act like that? They also discussed how you can get some sup- port from a domestic violence unit within Sandwell Homes to put the per- son where he needs to be and cannot go near the property I have joined the Sandwell Women’s Network Agency last week. It was fun being there because it makes you think. You are part of the crowd. No matter what happens, no-one can change you when you start thinking like them. Happy days are with SWAN Parminder Harbour by Lee Ashfield Homebase Window Shopping “Excuse me. Do you have any fake coal for fake coal fires?” “No sorry, we just have the real coal and I suppose that won’t do.” “No, it would just go whooof! and set the fire on fire.” “Anything else we can help you with?” “Err, not really, I’m just window shopping. Do you have any windows?” “Just the ones at the front of the store, and they’re not for sale.” “Well, they’d be too big. Anyway, thanks for your help.” “You’re welcome, bye.” “Bye.” Marek Bartosek 18/11/07 (Based on a real conversation with the staff at Homebase Selly Oak, today.) Surfing beach by Lee Ashfield 10 3 Benefits - they’re a minefield Two Stops In Norway After the cruise ships two stops in Iceland (before the place went Bankrupt). Anyone who has had a mental health problem will probably know that social security benefits are a mine-field. Its particularly difficult if you are not feeling well to deal with these things, and our advice would always be to consult a specialist such as a welfare benefits advice centre to get the help you need with understanding things and helping you fill in forms. EG. Sandwell benefits advice The ships propulsion unit had been repaired so we were able to proceed Operate an Advice Line: 0121 569 3158, 10am – 3:30pm Monday to Friday. to Norway under our own steam instead of being towed to Bremerhaven. That would have been okay as I’d never visited Bremerhaven before and However summarised below are a few aspects of benefits which may be of interest. We in- we would have featured on the news. clude points of contact where they are known. Our first stop in Norway was Olden which is situated on a fjord. When Incapacity benefit. - The new rules we set foot on the tarmac it was raining and mother was soon fed up and went back to the ship. It kept raining and along the fjord there where Firstly don’t panic ; if you are already on incapacity benefit the new rules do not apply to you just shops selling tourist-tat. I eventually found a small restaurant and as long as you continue to fit the criteria and your health and situation has not changed. How- waited in the slow moving queue. I could tolerate that because the wait- ever for all new claimants as of 27 Oct 2008 incapacity benefit is being replaced by something ress had an absolutely gorgeous bust. After eating my ice-cream I re- called Employment and support allowance. The focus is very much on getting people back to work as quickly as possible and includes lots of support to do this. A key concern we have turned to the ship. though is to what extent this will be used to push people who are not ready to go back to work The following day our port of call was Stavanger. We had a walk around into going back to work. Also of major concern is the quality of the jobs out there and the the town. The prices in Norway are sky-high (£5 for a cup of coffee!). work conditions for people entering (inevitably) at the lower end of the job market. Surely the We ended up in a shopping mall where we met a very attractive American government should be focused on making employers pay more reasonable wages and have girl who gave us some cherries. We then headed back to the ship, avoid- better working conditions in combination with this encouragement to get back to work. For further information about employment and support allowance go to http://www.dwp.gov.uk/ ing the showers. esa/. Will Smith 4 9 Disabilty living allowance Not everyone knows this but DLA can be given to people with mental health problems as well £££££££££££ as those with a physical disability. The form filling is a nightmare and you will get different levels of allowance depending on the severity of your difficulties. It may be worth noting that in our experience DLA is quite often refused initially and goes to appeal, so be prepared to be www.entitledto.co.uk consistent and stand your ground in terms of claiming what you are entitled to. Definitely seek By spending five minutes filling in some basic details about yourself, the help of a benefits advisor to help you fill in the forms and support your claim. A social your pay and status, you can find out if you are entitled to any govern- worker or support worker may also be able to help you with this. ment benefits. The site, which is free and funded by the sales of software to local authorities and other organisations, will list all the tax credits and benefits you should be claiming. Well worth a visit. Other Money Saving Tips Get your central heating system checked out to ensure it works ef- ficiently. You may be able to get a new system if you have an old system either free or at a big reduction through a government sponsored scheme “Warmfront”. Use the system you have more efficiently by using the valves on ra- diators, turning heating down in rooms you don’t use and have the heating go off an hour or so before you go to bed. Add a jumper rather than turn the heating up. Lots of layers are even better than Discretionary Trust one thick one. Some of us may be in a position wherein we are dependent on benefits and likely to be for the foreseeable future, but we may have parents who wish to leave us some money. Under social Buy your Christmas cards, wrapping paper, crackers etc in January security rules some benefits are means tested. Currently these are housing benefit council tax when they’re reduced for the following Christmas. benefit and income support. That means if you inherit money more than £16,000 you are no longer entitled to claim these benefits. Anything between £6000 and £16,000 and you will get a reduced amount of benefit. Incapacity benefit and disability living allowance are currently Downsize your brands – If you buy brand named stuff, buy super- unaffected market’s own brands and if you already do that, consider the “value” brands. Also don’t turn your nose up at Lidl and Aldi. There is a way to avoid the savings limit by having your inheritance put into a discretionary trust fund. This is quite complicated to understand but basically means that you will continue to get your benefits and the money you inherit will be held in a separate place and used to pay Sell stuff you don’t use on ebay (www.ebay.co.uk for occasional things or one-off things; say if you need to go into a care home. It isn’t some- Mark Wood thing for anyone to go in to lightly and you cannot set up a trust after you have inherited. It has to be done in the lifetime of the person you will be inheriting from. For more in formation visit rethink website. www.rethink.org Type in “discretionary trust” in the search page and it will link you to the correct page. 8 5 Direct payments Mark’s Money Saving Tips When I’m not in a manic over spending mind-frame, I can be quite canny (ie tight) with my scarce resources. With the increasing avail- ability of the internet at home or free in local libraries or community centres, I thought I would share with you some of the Internet sites that I have found useful. If you know of others you would be able to share with our readers, please write in. www.moneysavingexpert.com – Martyn Lewis’s excellent site that con- tains current moneysaving tips and offers from shops, restaurants, The idea of direct payments originated in the efforts of people with physical disablilites to leisure attractions and others. You can even print off vouchers and have more control over the care they receive. Rather than just having to put up with whatever get codes to get discounts when shopping online. care they were given direct payments allowed them to have the money directly and employ who they wanted to look after them. www.mysupermarket.co.uk – A site that uses the online shopping sites Not many people with mental health problems have used direct payments as of yet; however of Tesco, Sainsbury, Asda and Ocado to compare your shopping list there is a big advertising campaign going on at the moment to get more uptake from people and tell you where is the cheapest place to buy your shopping. It will with mental health problems. also suggest cheaper alternatives. First you need an assessment of your needs by a social worker. If the social worker assesses that you have a need for services (eg floating support) then you can choose to obtain that sup- www.lastseason.com – A site selling last season’s designer clothing at port by applying for a payment direct to yourself and then employing someone eg. From an agency. You have to account for all the money you have received and provide evidence of how big reductions it has been spent, so this is not just a top-up to your income. It has to be used on what you say it will be used for and this will be checked. www.amazon.co.uk – Well known site giving discounts on books, music, electrical items and many other items. Many people are put off direct payments as it can seem complicated. However there are bro- kers who can take most of the hassle out of doing it. www.saynoto0870.com For more information contact the Independent Living Foundation in Sandwell. To avoid calling pricey 0870 numbers, which can cost about 15p a minute, you can use this independent site to see if there is an alternative. Type in Ideal for All Pictures above are for illustration purposes the name of the company you want to call and you get a list of its cheaper www.idealforall.co.uk only; this is not a worker at Ideal for all geographical numbers and even some free 0800 numbers. 6 7