Perennial helps record number of people in horticulture in 2020

The charity Perennial helps people working in or retired from horticulture. Perennial can assist with financial support, benefits and debt advice, employment coaching, training, and career support, access to online mental health support, a legal helpline, and back-to-school support. As well as its range of frontline support services, Perennial provides services and information to help prevent people getting into deeper difficulty. If anyone working directly with plants, trees, flowers, or grass has a problem, however large or small, they can pick up the phone to Perennial and know that the charity will make sure they receive the support they need – for themselves and their family.

The team understands the devastating impact of bereavement, ill health, homelessness, redundancy, and family breakdown and appreciates that anyone can experience financial, mental, and physical health difficulties. Life’s challenges can be overwhelming, but Perennial is always on hand to provide guidance and support.

Over the past year, the impact of coronavirus has seen demand soaring, with record requests for their services. The number of people helped increased by 25% compared to the previous year. The coronavirus pandemic led to an influx of people looking for advice and help from Perennial, particularly during the first lockdown when the helpline saw an unprecedented increase in calls of 400% in the first week. They received enquiries from people who wouldn’t normally contact the helpline but turned to Perennial during very difficult times.

The coronavirus has devastated the livelihoods of many in horticulture. For Colin, who runs an award-winning fuchsia nursery in North Wales, 2020 was like no other. The sudden loss of income meant that the family were unable to pay for the basics. Perennial supported them with vouchers for food as well as helping towards electricity and gas for the first month of lockdown.

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