The Executive received an application for a revenue grant from Citizens Advice Woking towards the core service of the Charity, the Guildford County Court Helpdesk, the Financial Capability Programme and the service charge for the accommodation at Provincial House.
Councillor Forster asked as to the assessment undertaken by the Council in relation to the increased demand for services, in light of the effect on the group of reducing the annual grant. The Executive was advised that locally there had been an increase in demand consistent with national trends; during the first few months of 2021/22 a total of 2,200 clients had been helped with more than 7,000 different issues. Julie Fisher, Chief Executive, stated that she had spoken recently with Citizens Advice Woking and had been advised that further funding sources were being actively pursued.
(i) core funding of £189,000 be awarded from the Community Grants Budget to continue to support the core service of Citizens’ Advice Woking;
(ii) funding of £10,000 be awarded from the Community Grants Budget towards the costs of the Guildford County Court Help Desk;
(iii) funding of £11,500 be awarded from the Community Grants Budget to ensure the continuation of the Financial Capability programme; and
(iv) the Council continues to cover the service charge for the accommodation at Provincial House from the Community Grants Budget, which for next year will be circa £54,000.
Reason: To enable the organisation to provide its services to Woking residents.