How we work with local authorities and public sector clients

Background and brief

The North Yorkshire County Council Local Assistance Fund provides vital assistance to vulnerable individuals and families in North Yorkshire such as those experiencing domestic abuse or suffering with mental health issues.

Connect Assist have been administering the service since October 2015. As a social business, the core values of the Local Assistance Fund were appealing to Connect Assist as it offered the opportunity to help others.

To help meet short-term needs, awards from the Fund are made in kind, in the form of household goods and basic necessities, such as food, utility and clothing. In order to access more in-depth and longer term support, applications are made through ‘Authorised Agents’, specialist charities and frontline Council teams and services that can help applicants.

Partnership

The sensitive nature of the Local Assistance Fund meant that Connect Assist’s specialist trained agents were perfectly placed to understand the needs of its service users.

Since the partnership began, Connect Assist have updated the operating system that Authorised Agents use. This allows everything to run much more smoothly and efficiently. The system is responsive and transparent for Agents, and most importantly, it ensures those in need are being assisted as quickly as possible. 

Results

Mark Taylor, North Yorkshire County Council, said:

“When we re-tendered the service we were particularly drawn to Connect Assist’s positive values and ethics.

Since working with Connect Assist, we have been able to strengthen our existing service and we are confident that applicants are receiving a timely and responsive service.”

Case Study

Case Study: Grocery Aid

1.1.          Grocery Aid

1.1.1.      About our customer

Grocery Aid, the trading name of the National Grocers' Benevolent Fund, is the charity for the grocery industry. Grocery Aid helps people all over the UK who have worked, or are working, in the grocery industry and have now found that they need some extra support to get by. The help that Grocery Aid provides can make a very real difference and it provides not only monetary support, but also appliances and everyday items that many take for granted.

1.1.2.      The service we provide

The helpline was a new service for Grocery Aid. We set about improving the reach of their valuable service and sought to reach out to the people needing the help and support that they provide. In early 2010, Connect Assist successfully helped Grocery Aid launch their first helpline via our 24/7 Contact Centre. Today we offer multi-channel solutions via phone, e-mail, knowledgebase, ask a question and live chat.   The multi-channel helpline provides information and support to people and business owners working in the trade – from large supermarkets to corner shops. This includes an innovative ‘incident support’ service following attacks, arson and other incidents that are prevalent within the industry.

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