Organisations from across the city, including from the voluntary and community sector, came together to discuss how they can support the city and its residents with the increasing cost of living, at a meeting organised by Portsmouth City Council and HIVE Portsmouth.
Representatives from voluntary, community and business sectors in Portsmouth joined forces to hear about the issues facing the city and the work already underway, before giving their own ideas on how else to support Portsmouth residents.
Discussions centred around key topics including food and essentials, energy and bills, health and wellbeing, skills and employment, low-cost travel and ways people can help others.
Leader of Portsmouth City Council, Cllr Gerald Vernon-Jackson, said “We know times are tough for people in Portsmouth and it is vital that as a city we come together and work in partnership to provide whatever support we can. Yesterday was an opportunity for key people across the city to join forces and share ideas so we can make sure we provide the best possible response to this crisis.”
Lorna Reavley, Chief Officer of HIVE Portsmouth, said: “During the pandemic, organisations across the city came together to provide support to Portsmouth residents. We know once again we will come together to provide the best support we can for any residents who are struggling over the coming months. It was great to hear all the ideas from the discussion sessions.”
There is already a lot of help and support available to residents who are struggling. Earlier this week, Portsmouth City Council launched an online support hub and helpline to provide a one-stop source for all cost of living advice. A list of warm and welcoming spaces where residents can meet others, take part in activities, get a warm drink or meal, or spend some quiet time away from home can also be found on the council’s website.
This is all in addition to the exciting work carried out through the Health and Wellbeing Board, which coordinates responses from key organisations in the city, including the NHS, and through the council’s existing anti-poverty network, which involves voluntary and community sector organisations and partners.
Help and support is just a click or phone call away, visit the cost of living hub at portsmouth.gov.uk/costofliving or call the dedicated cost of living helpline on 023 9284 1047. The warm spaces, welcome places list can be found at www.portsmouth.gov.uk/warmspaces or call the Hive Helpline on 023 9400 7124 and request warm spaces information.