Claire worked at Jaeger for 28 years, before being made redundant when the company went into administration. She applied for an FTCT grant of £450 towards essential items for her son Sam (16) who was about to start a college course in plumbing. Here, Claire talks about her experience of applying to FTCT.

“I worked in various departments of Jaeger over the years - first, in the online packing department, then customer services. When we found out the company was closing, it was like someone had taken a sledgehammer to my whole life. My daughter Katie (21, pictured above) worked for the company, too. We both still miss the team we worked with.”

“I read about FTCT grants in a letter from our redundancy administrators. I didn’t apply at first because I wasn’t sure if I would have to pay it back when I got a new job. Another girl in my department applied and encouraged me to get in touch.”

My son Sam was about to enrol for his plumbing course at college. I had no savings pot to fall back on and, when I got the list of stuff he needed for his course, I just had no idea how I would afford it. It’s easy to bury your head in the sand, but then you wake up and reality hits. I knew I had to give FTCT a go.

“I filled in FTCT’s online enquiry form and, when I got an email back from the grants team, I was so glad. The process of applying was really simple. The team also encouraged me to think about other stuff Sam needed. He has dyspraxia, and if he doesn’t get a good night’s sleep his coordination is really affected. His mattress was old and worn out, so I decided to apply for a new mattress for his bed.”

“We received a grant of £450 which funded all the college equipment Sam needed, safety boots, overalls, and tools, plus a brand new mattress. Sam is absolutely thriving at college. His tutor raves about how well he is doing. He even has some of his work displayed on the classroom wall!”

“His new mattress makes such a difference, too. He can get up and function properly because he doesn’t have springs sticking in his back anymore! If I hadn’t applied for the grant, Sam wouldn’t have been able to go to college. I am so chuffed I applied.”

“To any other parent thinking of applying for an FTCT grant, I would say: ‘just fill in those forms’! The forms aren’t complicated. Our grant was my little safety net in my hour of need.”

Get help

If you're a parent working in the UK fashion and textile industry, your child might be eligible for a grant. Please read more about our grants and what we fund.

Apply here