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Update from Darren Henry MP

2nd April 2020 Darren Henry MP, Updates from Politicians Tags: 0 Comments

Dear people of Broxtowe, 

Thank you to the people of Broxtowe who are mostly keeping to the restrictions because of COVID-19. Please stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives.

I have engaged with Nigel Adams and Chris Dilks of Hope Nottingham, in Beeston. Hope is a support centre that works with many partner organisations such as neighbourhood foodbanks in the Nottingham area including in Stapleford, Chilwell and Beeston. They told me they have had a fivefold increase in demand in a week. They are moving to a delivery only service based on bulk supplies and are trying to provide a balanced diet. The reason for moving to a delivery service on bulk supplies is to be able to comply with the social distancing rules. Nigel and Chris explained that small, individual packages being received from groups of people turning up at the same time makes social distancing difficult. 

I understand that this is a challenging time for us in Broxtowe and especially for businesses and the self-employed. That is why I have been in regular contact with Mike Watkinson, Development Manager, at Federation for Small Businesses (FSB) and I will be staying in close contact with him throughout this pandemic to ensure that businesses in Broxtowe are supported. The Government has announced a significant package of measures to help businesses and the self-employed during this period and from today (1st of April) the high streets across the country and in our towns will start benefitting from a £22 billion coronavirus boost as they will be exempt from business rates. The website for Federation of Small Businesses is also very useful and it has a further link to the Government’s website: https://www.fsb.org.uk/campaign/covid19.html You can also go to my website: https://www.darrenhenry.org.uk/coronavirus 

Yesterday (31st of March) the Department of Education launched its national voucher scheme. Meaning that children who are eligible for free school meals will be provided it. Schools, if they have the capacity, can continue to provide meals for the pupils who are eligible either by collection or by delivery. If schools cannot provide this service, they can now provide families with vouchers worth £15. The Government and I are committed to ensuring that no child goes hungry as a result of the measures taken to tackle coronavirus. I understand that schools being closed can affect the lives of many families across Broxtowe. I would like to thank all the dedicated teachers who are still providing education to the children of vital workers who live in Broxtowe and all the staff who work in our schools. 

The scheme will work like this for Broxtowe’s parents of free school meals eligible children: 

1. You will receive the voucher through your child’s school. 

2. Redeem the voucher online via a code, or a gift card will be posted to your house. 

3. Use at Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Asda, Morrisons, Waitrose or M&S by presenting the voucher on your smartphone or tablet or by presenting a paper copy of the voucher. 

I am delighted to write that Nottinghamshire County Council has set up a £1 million Nottinghamshire COVID-19 Community Fund. This is to help communities, including those in Broxtowe, as we respond to these exceptional challenges. Charities and voluntary groups can now apply for a grant of between £200 to £10,000. This grant is to enable them to deliver projects or services, especially for the vulnerable. For more information and to apply for the fund here is a link to the webpage: https://www.nottinghamshire.gov.uk/business-community/community-and-vol… 

I am here to serve you and your loved ones. 

Darren

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