Emergency funds and support
If you are in an emergency or crisis situation there are some funds available from Newcastle City Council and the Department for Work in Pensions to help you pay for energy bills, household items, furniture, food, travel and other essential items.
Support to move or set up a home in Newcastle
Newcastle City Council runs The Supporting Independence Scheme for basic household items to help you live independently. For example beds, cookers, fridges or removal costs. It’s for people on low incomes who are being supported by Adult Social Care or Children’s Social Care, Community Mental Health Teams, Housing Advice Centre, Probation, Your Homes Newcastle Advice and Support Workers and other housing support workers/resettlement teams to:
- resettle in the community following a stay in an institution for example, a hospital, a care home or custody
- remain in the community rather than enter an institution
- set up home in the community, as part of a planned resettlement programme, following an unsettled way of life
Visit newcastle.gov.uk for more information. This scheme replaced the Community Care Grants which were previously part of the DWP’s social fund.
Crisis Support Scheme
The Crisis Support Scheme from Newcastle City Council is a payment to help you if you are in a crisis situation and there is a risk to your health and safety of that of a member of your household. The scheme is for people if you have no other source of funding or financial support. It is for:
- fuel for heating and;
- arranging emergency travel to cover short term periods
Read more about the Crisis Support Scheme and how to apply from Newcastle City Council. This scheme replaced the DWP Crisis Loan scheme
Discretionary Housing Payments (DHP)
DHP’s are short term extra payments to help you if you are struggling to meet your housing costs.
You must be getting help with your rent in Universal Credit or Housing Benefit to get a DHP.
Read more about Discretionary Housing Payments and how to apply from Newcastle City Council.
Non discretionary payments and loans from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP)
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) can arrange loans or payments for people who receive benefits such as:
- Funeral Payments can help you with the cost of arranging a funeral. Remember to check to see whether you are entitled to receive this help before making any funeral arrangements.
- Cold Weather Payments are made automatically to people who receive benefits such as Pension Credit or Income Support during periods (seven consecutive days) of exceptionally cold weather.
- Winter Fuel Payments are a one off annual payment for people of pension age over winter.
- Sure Start Maternity Grants for those who are pregnant or had a baby and received health and welfare advice.
- Budgeting Loans can help you to buy an item that you can’t normally afford for those on means tested benefits like Income Support and Pension Credit. You have to repay a budgeting loan. it is interest free and payment is taken out of your benefits to repay the loan.
- Universal Credit Budgeting Advances are similar to Budgeting Loans. They’re for people on Universal Credit.
- Universal Credit Advances are for Universal Credit claimants waiting for their first payment
Household support fund
Newcastle City Council is distributing money from the government Household Support Fund to help vulnerable people and families. This money is being used to fund:
- Free School Meal Vouchers for eligible children during Christmas and February half term school holidays
- Cost of living “top up” payments for people who receive housing benefit who were not entitled to the Government’s Cost of Living payment
- From early January 2023 hardship payments for food and or utility bills for householders who are in financial difficulty through a supported application process
More information about the scheme can be found on Newcastle City Council website
Help for individuals and families from charities
Some charities help people in financial need. You can search them for charities that can help you in various circumstances.
Turn2us is a charity where you find charitable funds and grants to apply for, when you need money for essential things in life. For example, furniture, household items, white goods, electrical items, studying, bringing up children, experiencing life changing circumstances and more. They have a telephone helpline, benefits calculator and online information.
Find a grant
Gov.uk’s Find a Grant service is where you can search for government funding to help you pay for things such as a new boiler.
Cost of living help and support
Newcastle City Council’s Cost of Living website has information about where to get help and support on a range of issues. This includes with:
- Benefits, debt, money and energy advice
- Housing support
- Wellbeing Hubs – a directory of places offer support. This includes community centres and libraries where people can go to stay warm while accessing free wi-fi, help and advice, learning new skills and taking part in activities such as cookery classes. You can also register your service as a Hub here.
- Help with school and learning costs, free childcare
- Council tax discounts and exemptions
- Crisis support and emergency funds
You can contact the Cost of Living Helpline at Newcastle City Council for help and support. You can complete their online form to ask for help or call the free helpline. They can signpost you to local help and support including:
- emergency food parcels
- wellbeing hubs: warm spaces in the local community where you can spend time and enjoy facilities such as Wi-Fi, hot drinks or food.
- help to mange your electricity or gas payments
You can read more on InformationNOW about:
- Cost of living support
- support for people on a low income
- food banks and emergency food
- free meals and cheap food in Newcastle
Where can I get benefits advice?
It can be useful to speak with someone about the benefits you may be entitled to and how they may impact upon your other benefits. A local independent advice service can help guide you through the process such as;
- Citizens Advice Newcastle (CAN)
- Your Homes Newcastle (YHN) give YHN tenants benefits and debt advice.
- Newcastle Welfare Rights Service have self help material on their website
There are more benefit advice services in Newcastle. Read the ‘Where to get benefit advice‘ booklet.
Other useful information
Last updated: November 20, 2023