CSIS awards funding | Education Support Partnership

CSIS awards funding

We are delighted that for another year running the Civil Service Insurance Society Charity Fund has awarded us a substantial grant of £50,000. This generous donation will help us continue to meet the growing demand for our emergency financial grants programme as well as our training and development fund in the year ahead.

CSIS Charity Fund is a highly focused organisation with the welfare of people working in the public sector; former, retired and serving civil and public servants at its heart. Over the past few years, the fund has donated £235,000 to Ed Support making a tremendous difference to our work. It has helped us give financial support to thousands currently working or having worked in education at a time when demand for our emergency grants is higher than it has ever been before.

In 2018, Ed Support received over 800 applications for financial grants, an increase of 27% in just one calendar year. Our confidential grants service is here to help anyone working in education; teachers, support staff, lecturers to deal with a short-term crisis and help prevent the likelihood of another in future.

People like Dawn Martin, an experienced secondary school teacher in Berkshire. She and her family have rented homes for the last 14 years but rents have continued to rise in the area. Despite careful budgeting the family had around £15 left after the bills were paid and when their landlord put the rent up,  they simply couldn't afford it and he served them notice.

Searching for a new home they quickly realised they would need thousands more than their modest savings for a new home to rent. Dawn says they had a growing realisation that she, her partner and two daughters faced homelessness.  We were able to help the family with grant towards a deposit and first month's rent. Dawn said: "Who knows where we'd be if we hadn't had the help of Ed Support."

As living and housing costs soar, many of the cases our specialist team see are becoming increasingly complex. Helping people with long-term illness and disability for example is becoming more common. Assistant caseworker Paramjit describes a recent situation where we are working with another charity, the Teacher’s Staff Trust to help a family with the costs of adapting a teacher’s family home to be accessible.  This was after her husband ‘s diagnosis of MS.  As a charity supporting the wellbeing and mental health of everyone in education, we also often refer grant recipients if they are struggling to our own confidential Helpline and signpost to expert debt counselling and other services.

Carl, our Grants Manager explained;

We’ve recently helped a number of older and retired teachers who are suffering ill-health themselves or may be caring for others who are unwell or have long-term conditions.  

“For example, we helped someone whose partner was a lecturer and she was caring for both him and their disabled daughter. We were able to step in and help with the costs of a week’s respite care so that she could have a break when the local authority were not able to help in the short term.

“People are often at breaking point when they come to us and thanks to the support of the CSIS Charity Fund we can help prevent a crisis.

“We are now increasingly working with grant-recipients to come up with a longer-term plan to getting their finances on-track.  It’s difficult when people are really struggling financially but we often work with partner organisations and experts to support and signpost people in this way, ensuring they are accessing any money benefits or other help they may not be aware they are entitled to. As the nature of work changes and short-term, temporary contracts become a norm, it can be really hard for families to create any financial stability.”

Thanks to CSIS, their ongoing support will mean that again in 2019 we will be able to help hundreds more education professionals.