Case studies

The Fund currently deals with over 600 individual cases every year and pays weekly grants to almost 220 elderly people on very low incomes. We receive many letters of thanks from those we help and their families. These summaries of a few of our recent cases show what we do and what it can mean for those we help. Names and locations have been changed in order to respect confidentiality.


is a BT employee in her forties. She suffered a brain haemorrhage at work, badly affecting her speech, which resulted in several months off while she recovered. A single parent with two children, she struggled to meet all her bills when she went on to half pay. A money advice service negotiated minimum payments on her outstanding bills, and her manager suggested she contacted the Fund. We were pleased to make a grant towards her housing and living costs, which kept her debt-free until she started back to work on reduced hours. She’s now fully recovered and back to full-time working.


and his wife are both in their mid-eighties and had worked for BT for 40 and 15 years respectively. Both had a number of disabilities, and much of their pension was going on paying for people to help them at home. Their only son lived abroad, and they couldn’t leave the house safely due to steps which they couldn’t see properly. The Fund made a grant to pay for their replacement with a ramp and handrails, so they could get out to medical appointments and other essential visits.


works for BT in a Scottish contact centre. She’d separated from her husband, and started divorce proceedings, when she came home from work one day to find he’d gained entry to the house, taken all the furniture and appliances, and smashed or damaged all her other possessions. He’d also run up gambling debts using an account in her name. BT arranged counselling for her, and the Fund made a grant for new furniture and white goods to help her make a fresh start.


is 64, single, and a BT pensioner. She’d spent many years caring for her elderly father, and hadn’t been able to work for the previous eight years. When he died she lost her carer’s allowance and had to move on to universal credit, which was a lower amount. She had a number of health issues and paying for her father’s funeral had taken all her modest savings. We paid her a grant to cover food and fuel until she received her first UC payment.


is 79 and a widower on a very low income. He was the victim of a distraction theft at a cash machine and his money for rent and food was stolen. When we talked to George we found he had a number of financial problems, was in arrears with his gas and electricity and had pawned some items to raise cash. We made a grant to pay his urgent bills and to replace the money he had lost.


had worked for BT for eight years in the 1980s. She had longstanding mental health issues and had recently been hospitalised for several months. During this period she couldn’t keep up with her bills, and when she approached us she’d been threatened with eviction from her flat. She was being helped to apply for appropriate benefits by the Citizens Advice Bureau, and we made a payment to her landlord which safeguarded her home.