FAMILYS struggling with the cost of living can get £150 in free cash, with the first payment made within days.
Help came from the Household Support Fund, worth £842 million.
The money came from the Government that distributed it among councils in England.
They then decide how to share their share of the fund.
That means what you can get depends on where you live, but in most cases help is provided to people with low incomes or subsidies.
The type of assistance offered also varies – some local governments offer food vouchers or utility bills while others make bank transfers.
You can even get help buying white items like refrigerators and washing machines.
For example, families in Durham can get £150 in free cash to help them buy food and other essential expenses.
Parents will be eligible if their children get free school meals or you don’t receive any payment to support living expenses.
Recipients will receive two vouchers worth £75 and the first will be made within weeks.
The first batch of vouchers will be sent in the weeks starting from June 19 and June 26 for children from primary school and up.
If your child is preschool (or kindergarten) then you should get it from July 3.
The second coupon will be paid out later this year with families receiving it in the weeks starting November 20 and 27 or December 4.
You don’t need to register – the money will be sent directly through your child’s school.
Can I get help if I don’t live in Durham?
Yes you can. But what you can get depends on where you live as each council has been given a single share of the £842million.
For example, households in Torridge line up to receive payments worth up to £1,000.
The application process also varies from region to region.
The best thing to do is to contact your local council to see what help is available and if any action is required.
You can do this using the Government locator found on their website.
But you might want to be quick as the competition for the fund is fierce and once the board has used up its share there is no more.
That said, the Household Support Fund has been renewed several times since it first launched in October 2021, so it could be renewed again when the current batch ends, in May 3 years 2024.
How to apply for the Household Support Fund?
Some households will be notified that they can apply for cash assistance and others will automatically receive cash.
Again, your board will determine if you need to apply for free cash.
Those who live in the Bracknell Forest and think they qualify for the Household Assistance Fund will need to apply by filling out an online form.
You can find the form on the Bracknell Forest Council website.
What other help is available?
Millions of people also lined up to receive living expenses payments worth up to £1,350.
The first part of the £900 payment has been paid to millions of people for certain benefits, including Universal Credit and Pension Credit.
Meanwhile, a £150 payment and a £150 to £300 payout will be made to millions of people with disabilities and pensioners in June.
You may be eligible for a £150 living expense payment if you receive any of the following benefits:
- Attendance allowance
- Continuous attendance allowance
- Disability living allowance for adults
- Living allowance for children with disabilities
- Individual independent payment
- Adult Disability Allowance (in Scotland)
- Child Disability Allowance (in Scotland)
- Armed Forces Independence Payment
- War pension migration supplement
Additionally, pensioners receiving the Winter Fuel Payment for the winter of 2023/24 will receive an additional £150 or £300 paid in addition to their usual payment from November this year.
You will be eligible for the Winter Fuel Payment this winter if you were born before September 25, 1957.
Those eligible for the payment will receive a letter in October and November telling how much money they will receive.
Energy providers also offer a variety of energy programs and grants to help you if you are struggling.
Here is a list of plans open right now:
- UK Gas Energy Trust Individuals and Families Foundation
- British Gas Energy Trust
- Customer Support Fund EDF
- E.ON and E.ON’s Next Sponsorship
- Octopus Energy Foundation
- OVO Energy
- Scotland’s Power Hardship Fund
There is a one-time fuel voucher from your energy provider if you are using a prepaid meter.
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