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Household Support Fund

If you are struggling financially, have you applied for the Household Support Fund yet? With the reduction in Universal Credit, rising energy prices and with overall living costs increasing, applying for this fund could offer some much-needed help and support.

A total of £500 million is being made available to councils and local governments across the UK, with Birmingham being allocated £12.7 million. The money can only be used by local councils up until the end of March 2022, and no money given to them can be carried over or used after that date.

How much will be awarded and what for?
Applications can be made for grants up to £150 per household, however, applications cannot exceed £150 in total. As part of the application process, individuals will be signposted to other support available to them in their locality such as: money and welfare advice, utility support, food bank/pantry and connect families into the local community resources to help families to be more resilient. You can only apply if you are known to services/organisations and are working with them for support. There are 5 categories of support which can be applied for:

1.      Food
2.      Gas/electricity/water
3.      Essentials linked to gas/electricity/water costs (including sanitary products, warm clothing, soap, blankets, boiler service/repair, purchase of equipment including fridges, freezers, ovens, etc.)
4.      Wider essentials (support with other bills including broadband or phone bills, clothing, and essential transport-related costs such as repairing a car, buying a bicycle or paying for fuel etc.)
5.      Housing costs (In exceptional cases of genuine emergency, the fund can be used to support housing costs.)

Who is eligible for the Household Support Fund?
The eligibility criteria will be set by each individual council. Applications will need to come through a verified community-based referral organisation. Depending on the area, supporting organisations include: Age Concern Birmingham, Age UK Birmingham, Barnardos, Compass Support, Disability Resource Centre, Gateway Family Services, GreenSquareAccord, Malachi, Northfield Community Partnership, POhWER, Spurgeons, Witton Lodge and Birmingham City Council. To access the fund, you must be referred by a professional in your local area.

Each area has a voluntary sector locality lead and staff from a range of services, find out who to contact here.

Further information about the Household Support Fund can be found on Birmingham City Council’s website.