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Member Spotlight: The Licensed Trade Charity

This month we feature the activities and history of the Licensed Trade Charity

The history of the Licensed Trade Charity

The Licensed Trade Charity was founded over 200 years ago, in Fleet Street in 1793. We were set up by people in the pub trade to look after those within it who need help and that ethos continues today, with most of our trustee body and volunteers having had, or continuing to have, careers in the trade.

We provide comprehensive support, across a diverse range of problems, when people need it, and are proud to have helped hundreds of thousands of people. We are honest with how we can help people, and take pride in the progress we make in being at the heart of the pub community that is so valuable in today’s society.

The support we offer

  • Grants & money advice – grants are provided for rent and mortgage arrears, rent and deposit to secure accommodation, repairs, white goods, furnishings, and more
  • Housing support – advice from experts on tenants’ rights and landlord responsibilities, financial help to avoid eviction, secure housing for the over 55s,and strong links to a wider support network for those in need
  • Mental health – we offer up to six free counselling sessions, face to face counselling and a 24/7 helpline so that whenever people are feeling low we are there for them
  • Health – advice on a range of health issues, providing a safety net if a member of staff can’t work and needs financial support, medical aids, advice on money or someone to talk to
  • Education and training – our website provides tips on subjects like finding a new job. We also offer educational grants for children of pub workers at our independent school in Berkshire, LVS Ascot, and help support former pub workers through retraining programmes to start new careers

In 2017 we helped over 8,000 people and are aiming to increase that reach by over 50% in 2021.

Can you give an example of someone you have helped?

Maxine contacted the Licensed Trade Charity as a single mother who used to work in a bar. With irregular temporary work, she fell behind on the rent of her 2-bedroom cottage and was worried about eviction. She also had a rising overdraft and council tax and water rate arrears, and could not afford essential home repairs including a broken washing machine and a mattress that needed replacing.

We gave her a short-term hardship grant to clear her debts, and ordered a replacement washing machine and mattress for her. We also provided a new laptop for her son so he could take up an apprenticeship.

What makes you unique?

We are able to help those who work or have worked in the licensed trade every minute of every day with our free 24/7 helpline, and can provide free counselling sessions.

The vast experience and support network at the Licensed Trade Charity means we are able to provide expert help on a diverse range of issues from money to health, and housing to education.

Strategic partnerships allow us to strengthen our offering – by working with Shelter, callers to our helpline can access additional assistance on challenging the threat of eviction and getting repairs actioned, whilst our relationship with Anchor allows our applicants to be boosted up their housing waiting list.

How do you know you are doing a good job?

More and more pub companies are partnering with us to promote our raft of benefits to their staff, including JD Wetherspoon, Mitchells & Butlers and Stonegate. We effectively work like a free employee assistance programme, so are a real benefit to them, and their support demonstrates what an important service we provide.

We also receive a lot of excellent feedback from the people we help. David Monaghan, a recipient of a grant last year, said: “I was overwhelmed by the support the Licensed Trade Charity gave me. The level of help from the charity was amazing and allowed my family to survive while I got over my illness, paying rent and helping with bills. I cannot thank them enough”.

What issues are bothering you at the moment?

An issue that is prevalent, rather than bothering us, at the moment is the subject of mental health which is coming up more and more frequently in the media. It is great that there is more focus and attention on it, and we are at the forefront of efforts to tackle the root of the problem within our sector through a new initiative. A grant from the Worshipful Company of Innholders has enabled us to set up training days across the country in 2019 for pub managers. This valuable initiative will enable them to develop greater knowledge of the most common mental health issues in the workplace and give them the confidence to deal with difficult situations that arise.

Visit The Licensed Trade Charity