Three long-term unemployed families on benefits are given a cash lump sum of £26,000 in return for signing off, to see if they have what it takes to improve their lives and escape the benefits trap. This opening episode introduces the three families, including Tony and Diane from Hull and their 21-year-old son Michael, who persuades his parents to let him buy the latest PlayStation. Scott and Leanne from Liverpool order some bouncy castles as they start a party business, while single mum Rachel treats her family and friends to an all-you-can-eat Chinese buffet.
The Great British Benefit Handout is a bold social experiment which investigates a potentially ground-breaking solution to one of the biggest questions of today – how do we get people in the UK off benefits?
Three long-term families dependent on benefits are given a cash handout of 26,000 each, the current maximum yearly benefit cap for most families. In return, the families must agree to sign off benefits, and see if one large cash sum can turn their lives around for good.
The experiment asks the families to use the money in a way that can positively change their circumstances, make them happier and ultimately remove them from the benefit system. However, there are no strings attached and contributors will make their own decisions, spend money as they want but with the knowledge that theyve given up their lives on benefits, and theres no more to come.
Will the families be able to grasp this extraordinary opportunity or will the temptations of a large sum of money in their bank account distract them from their good intentions of building a business or finding work?