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  • Really, no one tells you this, does anyone know best place I can look/contact to see what I am entitled to.
    Jan Grocery challenge
    Budget £350 - Spent £64.45 to date
  • Fran
    Fran Posts: 11,281 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Really, no one tells you this, does anyone know best place I can look/contact to see what I am entitled to.
    You should ask at the Jobcentre. (And keep an eye on this thread of course!)
    Torgwen.......... :) ...........
  • Hi - I think it was a MSE newsletter that first pointed out Asda's 'city' suits.

    Ahead of an interview last week, I went to see them and ended up buying a skirt suit for £20. I was expecting cheap-looking polyester but it looks really good and comes in a good range of sizes :cheesy:. Still waiting to hear about the interview though! :huh:
  • Sami_Bee
    Sami_Bee Posts: 14,555 Forumite
    Really, no one tells you this, does anyone know best place I can look/contact to see what I am entitled to.
    try here
    besides this site obv! I found that none of the people actually in the jobcentre had upto date knowledge of who is entitled to what as it's no longer part of their remit
    The very best is sometimes what nature gives us for free.
    3onitsway wrote: »
    I think Sami is right, as always!
  • This is the Advisor Discretionary Fund. I believe you have to be claiming for at least six months before you are eligible and on a means tested benefit (eg Jobseekers Allowance Income based). If you are on New Deal you are eligible and a lot of advisors will tell you about this during the main interview. It is not just clothes that can be purchased under this scheme-it is designed to overcome barriers to employment so in my area we have an agreement with a local bike shop whereby we can give the customer's an invoice to purchase a bike, lock, lights, helmet etc under the scheme. This may, however, not be available in all areas, it was just something that we set up because our customers had a need for it. To try to access the fund, you need to make an appointment with a JobcentrePlus advisor, who will ultimately decide if you can access it. Due to the auditing trail, most areas issue invoices under this scheme-agreements have been made with certain shops where the advisor writes down what is needed and the maximum amount per item that can be spent and the customer takes this to the named shop; chooses the item(s) and then swaps the invoice for them.
    If you are finding the cost of looking for work a problem, the Programme Centres are excellent for this-they will help you with 'soft' jobsearching skills eg cv's; application forms etc; I believe they will also help with costs of travelling to interviews too but you would need to check this. Programme Centres run 26 week programmes that can be accessed from day one of unemployment in my area. My local one will also take customers through (ie pay for) the CSCS card. The provider's have access to a different pool of money to Jobcentres-they can access European Funds-and can often help with a lot of things that Jobcentres can't. Information about these are on the site.
    Sorry to keep saying my area but I have only ever worked in this one and don't want to say that all are the same as I have no experience of them! Best thing is always to ask in your local (Jobcentre that is!)
  • Hope you dont mind me asking but what is a cscs card. Does anyone know if I would get any help towards an ECDL/ITl course with learn direct if claiming JSA. Do not have a college locally that run course.
    Jan Grocery challenge
    Budget £350 - Spent £64.45 to date
  • Sami_Bee wrote: »
    if you're claiming JSA...
    also i think Free prescriptions and dental treatment?

    You can - I've had both!!
    Also if you need to phone lots of people (about jobs) it may be cheaper to go to the job centre and use their phone to make the calls

    Trouble is it costs me £4.60 to get to my Jobcentre!

    The other big 'saving' is to hang on until you are 60 - your JSA weekly allowance more than doubles!
  • A CSCS card is issued after taking a test in health and safety for those in the construction trade. If you have a LearnDirect Centre near you, your Jobcentre may have links with it which could mean you can access the course for free. Other than this, ask at your Jobcentre if any of your local providers are running any ESF programmes, as you can take the ECDL under this, once again I believe from day one of unemployment. If your Jobcentre doesn't know, ask them who your providers are and contact them directly.
  • tallym
    tallym Posts: 7 Forumite
    oldmotherreilly is mostly correct about the Advisor Discretionary Fund, but it is available at ALL Jobcentres across GB, to people who are on one of the New Deal schemes, or who have been in receipt of Jobseekers' Allowance for 6 months or more (contribution based or income based, continuously, with no gaps). The word to bear in mind is 'discretionary', so there is no entitlement to it, it is at the discretion of the adviser.
  • Sorry, I didn't mean to mislead-Advisor Discretionary Fund is available across the country but what I meant to stress was that the way it is implemented may be different-we have locally based companies whom we can invoice, who will obviously not be accessible to others who do not live in this area. If you have something that you particularly need which will overcome a barrier to work, approach your Jobcentre and they will tell you the best way to apply. Incidentally, if you claim credits only, you cannot access ADF.
    Tallym-I believe that it is only JSA(IB) as you can only claim conts for 6 months so this would have exhausted when the entitlement to ADF kicks in?
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