Financial Support

The parish council receives information about grants people can apply for to help with their heating and other domestic costs.
A summary of these is set out below with the relevant website links.

From the Government

https://www.tmbc.gov.uk/cost-of-living
This offers information on:

  • Help paying bills
  • Help with food
  • Help with housing
  • Help saving energy
  • Household support fund

You can also check via https://www.gov.uk

  • Your benefit entitlement
  • Search for grants
  • Help for households
  • One-off payments from government
  • Money Helper UK

Click on the relevant one that interests you and it takes you to a separate page specifically for that topic (help with food, help housing, help with energy, and so on) 

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/cost-of-living-payment
This Government website offers information on: 

  • Low income benefits and tax credits Cost of Living Payment eligibility
  • Payment dates for low income benefits and tax credits Cost of Living Payment
  • Disability Cost of Living Payment eligibility
  • Payment dates for the Disability Cost of Living Payment
  • Find out how to report a missing Cost of Living Payment
  • Pensioner Cost of Living Payment
  • 2022 Cost of Living Payments
  • Other help

Again, click on the relevant one that interests you and it takes you to a separate page specifically for that topic (Low income benefits and tax credits, Cost of Living Payment eligibility, Pensioner Cost of Living Payments, Disability Cost of Living Payment eligibility, and so on).

Kent County Council 

For Financial Hardship queries there is a KCC email address, HelpingHands@kent.gov.uk, and a web link, https://www.kent.gov.uk/leisure-and-community/cost-of-living-support

There are three areas you can find out information on:

  • Urgent help and support: for people in crisis there are funds and support you can access
  • Reducing your energy bills: getting advice on how to reduce energy use and who to contact for help paying bills
  • Check benefits eligibility: even if you’ve never claimed, you use the calculator to check what you are entitled to

General help line for support and help with money is Kent Together on 03000 41 92 92 

Kent Parish Council Winter Support Scheme (runs until 1st March 2024)
https://forms.office.com/e/wu1B38bVkS

Criteria are set out here: https://pcwsscriteria.tiiny.site

Applications are now open for Town and Parish Councils to seek funding for either new or existing initiatives aimed at assisting individuals experiencing financial hardship due to the ongoing cost-of-living crisis.

The scheme is designed to support a diverse range of low-income households, including families with children, older individuals, unpaid caregivers, and those living with a disability—each facing unique and acute challenges.

Funds from the scheme can be utilised for various purposes, such as purchasing food, washing machines, fridge freezers, slow cookers, air fryers, as well as energy-saving items like lightbulbs, warm packs, draft excluders, and winter clothing. Additionally, the funds can contribute to managing health conditions, safeguarding independence, and preventing social isolation.

HSF4 Winter Energy Scheme – runs until Thursday 29 February 2024 (or earlier if the budget is spent)  
If successful, support will be provided in one of the following:  

£100 prepaid physical card to be used to pay for energy via PayPoint or Post Office physical locations (sent to applicant via Royal Mail)

£100 virtual energy card to be used to pay directly to energy providers for electricity, gas or water bills. Energy providers including British Gas, EDF, E.on, Bulb, Octopus and many more (sent to applicant via email) 

Applicants must  

  • be aged 16 or over
  • be a Kent resident, permanently living within one of the 12 local authorities covered by Kent County Council (this excludes Medway, Bromley, and Bexley)
  • have a household income less than £40,000 per annum before tax (including any means tested benefits)
  • be the named utility bill payer for the household
  • not have savings above £1000
  • not be receiving free school meal support within their household

General help page for support from KCC
https://www.kent.gov.uk/social-care-and-health/adult-social-care/paying-for-care/benefits/household-support-fund

https://grants-search.turn2us.org.uk
A website devoted to helping you find out the range of grants on offer.

The grants come from registered charitable organisations across the UK – they give grants to assist people in need. Grants are given to people based on their personal circumstances, for example a job you’ve worked at or a health condition you may have.

Everyone can apply for a grant and many charities will help people who cannot claim welfare benefits because of their status in the UK. There is no guarantee you will get a grant, but it can show what you could apply for.

Each fund’s payment methods will be specific to them. Grants can be given as money, products or services that don’t have to be paid back. Each fund has a different timeframe. This can range anywhere from 5 days to 3 months.