Cost of Living Crisis Report
The cost of living has been gradually increasing over time; however, it wasn’t until the announcement of rising energy costs this year that it began to feel like reality. Whilst the cost-of-living crisis will affect us all, the impact will be disproportionately felt by those who are already struggling to make ends meet.
“The price increase that is currently happening does not provide anyone with a chance to progress or improve their lifestyle. My wage covers my rent and bills, so I’ve had to take on more work, but I have four jobs now and I still can’t see the light.”
Newham Poverty Stats:
Newham already has the second highest poverty rate in London, with 37% of residents living in poverty. The borough also has the second highest child poverty rate in the country, affecting 50% of children. Alongside this, only one in three jobs pay Living Wage.
There has been an increase in demand for charities like ours to support those needing extra help during such unprecedented times.
Over September and October, we conducted a Cost-of-Living Crisis consultation, surveying our clients and other Newham residents, to ascertain how they will be affected by the current financial crisis and what we can do to help. We surveyed 115 individuals to obtain this information.
We chose to make this survey anonymous to protect those completing it, however we did give the individuals the option to provide a direct contact number and e-mail should they wish to be contacted by a member of our team.
“I am extremely worried about the future; there is nothing positive about the situation. I’m very hurt and feel isolated as there is no one to help.”
100% say they are worried about the cost-of-living crisis.
77% say they are worse off compared to last year.
“As a family we need an additional source of income to balance things out. I’m struggling to get part-time paid work that does not affect my childcare responsibilities.”
46% of people say they will cut down on heating to cope with the cost-of-living crisis.
27% say they will not use heating to cope with the cost-of-living crisis.
65% say they will have to cut down on other essentials, such as food and travel, to cope with the cost-of-living crisis.
“With priority bills needing paying, we take advantage of free or reduced cost activities for our children as family outings have been reduced to be able to budget.”
25% say they will have to borrow money to cope with the cost-of-living crisis.
Food Bank Results:
50% say they have used a Food Bank
“Without the Food Bank it would be impossible to manage as I have three young kids and a partner with chronic disease, who can’t work long hours due to hospital appointments.”
59% say they have skipped a meal in order to pay a bill.
“Me and my daughter have a very low income. Everything is so expensive. Every time we go to the shop, we must choose what to buy as we really struggle.”
33% say they have skipped a meal so their child could eat. 16% say they skip a meal once a week so their child can eat.
95% say they expect their finances to get worse over the next year.
“I’m a single mother and a victim of domestic violence. I have no income except NRPF, so when the cost of living increased, my payment stayed the same. It’s difficult for me to maintain everything.
The cost of living crisis is having a deeply damaging impact on Newham’s residents who were already severely affected by structural poverty and disadvantage. The impacts of this fast escalating crisis is likely to have implications for years to come on the poorest and most vulnerable.
The Renewal Programme is working harder than ever together with many partner organisations, in Newham and beyond, to provide support for those most affected.
We will continue to provide emergency food packages twice weekly to combat food poverty and will shortly be providing a new hot meals service for those with no cooking facilities at home.
We are also partnering with Newham Council and the Cadent Foundation to provide a warm space for three days a week through the winter, alongside a new two year project to provide advice and support to help reduce/better manage energy consumption for Newham residents.Peter Laing, Renewal Programme’s CEO
For help, and full details, of our current programs, please go to the ‘Get Support‘ section of our website.