David Butterfield

1. How did you distribute the COVID Winter Grant to vulnerable families, i.e. cash, food parcels or retail supermarket vouchers?
2. Did you use this grant to distribute financial support to families of children eligible for free school meals?
3. How many children were eligible for Free School Meals and how many children claimed financial support via the grant scheme?
4. Did you use the grant to distribute support to other vulnerable families / individuals and if so, which groups, i.e. homeless etc.?
5. If using supermarket vouchers
(a) which supplier(s) did you use to distribute the vouchers?
(b) how did you choose a supplier?
(c) what were your top 3 mandatory requirements for the service?
(d) did you coordinate the ordering to all beneficiaries/recipients, or was access delegated to schools to administer and order?
(e) did you enter into a direct contract with the supplier or call off via a framework?
(f) when does your contract end?
6. Following Government's extension of the COVID Winter Grant, will you continue to fund Free School Meal vouchers in May half-term and summer holidays?
7. Which role(s) and job functions manage the contract for this service?

InfoMgr, FinDMT, Wirral Metropolitan Borough Council

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Butterfield

 

We write in response to your recent Freedom of Information request
regarding COVID Winter Grant Scheme.  Please see our response to your
questions below.

 

1. How did you distribute the COVID Winter Grant to vulnerable families,
i.e. cash, food parcels or retail supermarket vouchers?

Multiple projects were funded which included the provision of food
hampers, hot meals, bespoke food shopping, supermarket vouchers, fuel
vouchers, essential supplies, white goods, essential furniture, warm
clothing, emergency heating, emergency boiler repairs/replacements and
help with utility debt.

Details can be found here:
[1]http://democracy.wirral.gov.uk/ieDecisio... and here:
[2]http://democracy.wirral.gov.uk/ieDecisio...

 

2. Did you use this grant to distribute financial support to families of
children eligible for free school meals?

Yes – A proportion of the Grant was used to direct targeted provision to
Free School Meal eligible children (and nursery age and college age that
met certain criteria) was via food hampers.

 

3. How many children were eligible for Free School Meals and how many
children claimed financial support via the grant scheme?

12,137 eligible (based on October 2020 census) and 12,758 eligible (based
on January 2021 census). 

 

Numbers of FSM eligible children opting in:

Christmas 2020 7,460
February half-term 2021 7,996
Easter 2021 8,208

 

4. Did you use the grant to distribute support to other vulnerable
families / individuals and if so, which groups, i.e. homeless etc.?

None of the projects specifically targeted other groups, although there
will be individuals from such groups who benefited.  Some of the
community-based groups funded through the small grants programme (COVID
Winter Fund – funded by the Grant) may have used all or some of their
grant funding to target particular groups.

 

5. If using supermarket vouchers

(a) which supplier(s) did you use to distribute the vouchers?

We did not use supermarket vouchers to support the targeted FSM eligible
cohort or other groups.  The Grant part-funded eligible awards made
through the Council’s temporary Financial Support with Welfare Needs
Scheme which provides, amongst other things, financial support with food
and other essential items.  This scheme is by application and the
applicant can chose the supermarket if granted an award (i.e. an award
which results in a supermarket voucher); supply is therefore made directly
by the Council to the applicant via the online platform of the applicant’s
supermarket of choice.

 

(b) how did you choose a supplier?

Not applicable

 

(c) what were your top 3 mandatory requirements for the service?

Not applicable.

 

(d) did you coordinate the ordering to all beneficiaries/recipients, or
was access delegated to schools to administer and order?

Not applicable.  A local community-based organisation was commissioned to
co-ordinate the provision of hampers to Free School Meal eligible children
(and nursery age and college age that met certain criteria), engaging with
over 20 other local community-based organisations to prepare hampers
and/or deliver.

 

(e) did you enter into a direct contract with the supplier or call off via
a framework?

Not applicable.

 

(f) when does your contract end?

Not applicable.

 

6. Following Government's extension of the COVID Winter Grant, will you
continue to fund Free School Meal vouchers in May half-term and summer
holidays?

No – we are not using vouchers.  We are however funding a project to
support the ten most in-need Free School Meal eligible children from each
primary and secondary school over the May half-term with food hampers. 
The details can be found here:
[3]https://democracy.wirral.gov.uk/ieDecisi.... The
extension of the COVID Winter Grant Scheme – now COVID Local Support Grant
– is due to end on 30 June 2021, so does not cover the summer holidays.  

 

7. Which role(s) and job functions manage the contract for this service?

Not applicable.  Delivery of the COVID Winter Grant Scheme/COVID Local
Support Grant is managed by the Temporary Lead for Food & Welfare Support
(COVID-19).

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

Lynette Paterson

Principal Information Management Officer

Wirral Council

PO Box 290
Brighton Street
Wallasey
CH27 9FQ

 

Email: [4][Wirral Borough Council request email]

 

Visit our website: [5]www.wirral.gov.uk

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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David Butterfield

Lynette Paterson
Principal Information Management Officer

Hello Lynette,

Thank you for your prompt response which is hugely appreciated.

Best regards,

David Butterfield
Managing Director