Southwark and Merton provide Ukrainian refugees with cash via Post Office Payout Now

Photo by TOLGA AKMEN/AFP via Getty Images

Post Office’s Payout Now service has been offered to local councils as a way of providing Ukrainian refugees with emergency cash payments without the need to provide a visa or proof of address.

London councils Southwark and Merton are the first to provide Ukrainian refugees with cash using the Payout Now barcode voucher service.

Post Office is in discussions with a number of other local councils about how the emergency cash service works.

Payout Now has been developed by leading Sussex-based security-print company Zunoma in partnership with the Post Office. It provides instant and emergency cash relief to vulnerable people without the need for a bank account or a valid ID. The scheme has helped over 103,000 individuals since the Payout Now service began in 2019.

To access the service, refugees must contact or visit the nearest local council or Citizens Advice, which will be able to issue a one-time use barcode voucher for a nominated amount. This barcode voucher will be sent to the customer via SMS or email, which can be exchanged at any of Post Office’s 11,500 branches for cash.

“All those at the Post Office continue to be devastated by the conflict in Ukraine and we are committed to supporting the Ukrainians in any way that we can,” said Simon Lambert, Commercial Director at the Post Office. Not only are we are accepting donations in all of our Post Offices to encourage the general public to easily donate, but our Payout Now service will offer hundreds of refugees emergency financial support from the moment they step foot in the UK.”

Phil Ouzman, Managing Director at Zunoma, commented: “This is a humanitarian crisis and we are proud to partner with the Post Office, to offer an easy to use, quick payment facility to those in desperate need. Whether it be a refugee or a UK citizen in need of emergency funds, the Payout Now service offers peace of mind that emergency cash will be available to those who need it.”

Post Office recently announced that over £1 million has been raised for the Disaster Emergency Committee (DEC) Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal.