The Printing Charity ramps up welfare grants

The Printing Charity awarded nearly a third more welfare grants in 2017 than the previous year, helping almost 1,300 people needing support and financial help.

Chairman Jon Wright told last week's annual general meeting (AGM) in London the charity gave 986 welfare grants, up by 28%.

Some 724 people were helped across welfare and unemployment support and almost 500 people were guided through its education initiatives.

Chief executive Neil Lovell said that as well as grants, help included advice on debt, mental health issues or guidance on services to keep beneficiaries out of hospital.

“There will be increases because of our ageing population, but changes to the structure on welfare benefits has led to delays in receiving payments in some cases,” he said.

“It is a very stressful situation for anybody facing delays and while we do not lobby government, we look at how the voices we represent are heard.”

Lovell added: “We work across two extremes, from supporting people in crisis to championing the sector we represent.

“We are focused on finding ways to build strong partnerships and greater awareness of the help and support we offer and 2017 shows the strides we continue to make.”

At the AGM, Jon Wright and Steve Sibbald were re-elected as the Printing Charity’s chairman and deputy chairman respectively.

Guest speakers included Benjamin Charman, a trainee project manager at Paragon Customer Communications and a 2017 Print Futures Awards winner.

He outlined the advantages of completing an apprenticeship that led to his current role working on two high profile projects, one of which is to reduce data security risks.

The event included an exhibition of work by eight University of the Arts/London College of Communication students studying photojournalism and documentary photography.

Tom Barlow Brown, Carola Cappellari, Maxime Cossé, Sebastian Garraway, Claudia Greco, Marcin Nowak, Baldassare Sciacca, and Tom Walton produced work to a brief by the charity.

The Printing Charity was founded in 1827 to support people of all ages working in printing, paper, packaging, and publishing.