Advice Shop @ West Lothian Pride
We believe that everyone should have financial security and the help and support needed to work towards a future free of money worries. It is more important now then ever before that we work hard to provide advice to people in West Lothian facing tough times. We are here to help with any issues you might be facing with your money, housing, debt or energy and encourage anyone in difficulty to contact us for help, advice and support.
The Advice Shop is a free, impartial and confidential service to help people of West Lothian with a focus to alleviate poverty, promote inclusion and equality through advice, assistance and advocacy.
We provide advice in 4 main areas:
- Benefit checks - to identify entitlement to various benefits and tax credits. Try our simple online benefit calculator to get an idea of your potential entitlement
- Welfare rights advice - help and advice to resolve problems with benefits or tax credits
- Help to claim - assistance for those who need it to fill in benefit claim forms
- Appeals - we can help customers to challenge unfair benefit or tax credit decisions and can attend tribunal hearings with clients to help them put their case forward
Money and Debt Advice
The Advice Shop have a team of specialist money advisors to help customers handle multiple debts
- Help to deal with secured or unsecured debts
- Negotiation with creditors
- Advice on bankruptcy and other schemes for dealing with debts
- Help and support with budgeting and financial wellbeing. Take a look at our online guide to improve your financial wellbeing and try our quick and easy budgeting tool
- Advice on housing options available to you
- Assistance to resolve disputes with your landlord
- Advice on private rented accommodation including repair issues
- Help dealing with rent or mortgage arrears
- Help to access the Mortgage to Rent Scheme
- Representation at court for customers in danger of losing their home due to rent or mortgage arrears
- Housing Benefit checks and help to claim
- Negotiating with fuel suppliers to resolve problems
- Help with fuel debt including assistance to set up affordable and sustainable re-payment arrangements
- Fuel tariff comparison and advice on how to switch and save
- Heating use and ventilation advice
- Help to access energy efficiency measures including insulation works
- Help to access other grants and schemes to help towards heating costs
We have also pulled together all of the latest information about coronavirus financial advice and support into one handy page.
Don't delay... get in touch today! Fill in our quick online referral form and an advisor will call you back to discuss your situation.
If you are interested in volunteering with us, we have a wide range of roles and welcome any and all applications.
Due to COVID-19, we are currently unable to recruit new volunteers for face to face roles, but keep an eye on our volunteering webpage to be the first to hear about new opportunities.
Current volunteering opportunities
Experts by Experience
If you have experience of struggling to manage on a low income, either directly or indirectly, and would like to have an input and discuss ways to help the community, we would like to hear from you.
As part of West Lothian Council'sthe 'Experts by Experience' Panel has been established to gather the views of those who have experience, or know of someone, who has experienced poverty at some point in their lives. The success of the panel will create a better picture of poverty in West Lothian and inform our planning to tackle the major issues surrounding poverty.
As a member of the panel you could choose to take part by:
- Attending monthly meetings
- Contributing to forward planning of the panel activities
- Acting as a consultation panel for various West Lothian Council departments' strategy updates
- Attending, and contributing, where appropriate, to additional working groups
- Reviewing Advice Shop publicity materials
- Assisting with creating action plans for projects agreed by the panel
- Undertaking activities as a 'mystery shopper' to inform future action planning
If you would like to get involved or would like further information please call 01506 283000 (option 4) or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org