Karin Lloyd takes a brief look at the kind of support charities are providing to the UK population, including insurance customers.
Many charities are currently supporting people who have had to stop work due to illness, with both financial and practical help. As well as the critical role that charities will play as part of the Family Support Initiative, It’s useful for insurers to understand more about what these charities are providing; they may be helping existing income protection claimants and their deep understanding of the needs and challenges faced by people in this situation is something we can all learn from when trying to develop the most appropriate products, services and customer communications for buyers of insurance.
Here’s a brief round-up of some of the types of support available:
“Many people struggle with daily living after a stroke. There are lots of services and products out there, and finding the ones that might help can be tough.
That’s why we created Equip Stroke in partnership with the Disability Living Foundation. It’s an online guide to the aids and equipment that could help your life after stroke.
Get personalised advice for you or someone you support by clicking on this link.”
We can help with money worries
“Losing sleep over the cost of cancer? Money worries are the last thing you need when you’re facing the toughest fight of your life. We’re here to support you every step of the way with financial support, advice and our financial guidance tool.
MacMillan Grants: A Macmillan grant is a one-off payment for adults, young people or children with cancer, to cover a wide range of practical needs. This can include things such as heating bills, extra clothing, or a much needed break. Every week over 600 people receive a grant from Macmillan Cancer Support.”
Disability Rights UK are the acknowledged experts on benefits for disabled people. A wealth of information is available for individuals but a service many may not know about is a dedicated advice line for member organisations, which could include insurers who clearly have an interest in getting their claimants the best welfare support available:
The advice service aims to -
- enable organisations to develop their workforce skills; and
- provide a guide through the tax credits and benefits maze.
The British Heart Foundation provide help at the extreme ends of the spectrum, while people are healthy and working, and for those left behind after the death of a loved one, as well as various points in between.
“Health at Work: Encourage your colleagues to be more active, eat healthily and have less stress with our free Health at Work Programme.
We’ve got all the tools and resources you need to manage a health and wellbeing programme. Accept your mission: very possible and help transform your workplace.”
“Our booklet, Losing someone to heart disease, can offer you help and support with the loss of a loved one to heart disease. It aims to:
- help you understand the ways in which grief and bereavement might affect you
- offer guidance in coping with the complex and sometimes overwhelming collection of emotions you may feel
- provide guidance on legal procedures and practical and financial matters that you may have to deal with.
It includes contact details of organisations that will be able to offer you further support, both in coping with your loss and in handling the various procedures that need to be followed when someone dies.”
One of the many useful features on the RNIB site is their Money and Finance section:
“Managing your money is a vital part of living independently.
It can be challenging if some vital activities, such as getting cash out or checking your balance, are inaccessible to you.
This money and finance section has lots of helpful information, including:
- banking advice
- handling cash and bank cards
- publications and products to help you manage your money
- where to go for financial advice
- benefits and grants information”
This is just a small selection to give a flavour of what’s out there. Many other major and smaller charities dedicate equally valuable resources to people who have been hit by a condition that prevents them from working and of course all of these charities are also gateways to inspirational stories and emotional support for people whose world has just fallen apart.
The Family Support Initiative will relieve some of this burden, that is currently borne almost exclusively by charities, by partnering with them to highlight the need for people to make provisions while they are healthy and earning. You can read more about it here.