Thames Water has handed over a significant additional cash injection to the Thames Water Trust Fund, administered by Midlands-based public benefit entity Auriga Services to help vulnerable customers struggling to pay their water bills and charges during the coronavirus pandemic.

As a result of the COVID19 outbreak, Thames Water has doubled its donation from £0.5m to £1m to the Thames Water Trust Fund, which helps individuals who are suffering financial hardship in the Thames Water area.

In addition, Thames Water is increasing its Customer Assistance Fund from £3.4 million to £4 million.

The combined total of £5 million will be a major help to customers in financial hardship and will enable qualifying customers to pay off debts on their water bills and assist with flexible payment plans.

These funds will be fully managed and delivered by Auriga Services – which already helps over 1,000 people every day who are experiencing financial hardship by administering the trust funds of Severn Trent Water, United Utilities and the British Gas Energy Trust Fund.

The generous cash boost includes personal contributions from the company’s Chairman, Chief Finance Officer and various members of the executive leadership team. The independent Thames Water Trust Fund, which is funded by the company’s shareholders, provides grants to third sector organisations, such as Citizens Advice Bureau, who offer Thames Water customers long-term support and free debt advice.

Mark Abrams, chief executive of Auriga Services, comments: “We are delighted that Thames Water has added to their generous Trust Fund donation. This will allow us to help significantly more people who have been financially affected by coronavirus to have access to extra support during such challenging times.”