Help for residents facing financial hardship
Winter support fund for struggling families
The government has announced a new fund to support households who are struggling financially. The new fund will help families to meet food and heating costs over the coming months as the country continues its recovery from the pandemic.
We will publish more details here as soon as we have further information from the government about this fund and how it will be distributed.
Self-isolation support payments
Have you got Covid and need to self-isolate but are worried about making ends meet? You can apply for a self-isolation payment.
Find out about benefits you could be entitled to, visit Help paying
The welfare benefits team can provide welfare rights advice including debt advice, support to identify benefit entitlement and applying for grants.
Help with a new benefits claim
Council tax support
Visit Help with council tax or call 020 8753 6681 if you need help and advice.
Local support payments
Find out how to get extra support in crisis see Help paying.
Free employment support available from WorkZone
Our H&F WorkZone service is here to support residents into work.
If you have recently lost your job or at risk of being made redundant, please contact us at email@example.com or call 020 8753 6773.
The free employment service provides:
- Access to job and apprenticeship opportunities
- CV and interview technique support
- Dedicated advisor for one-to-one advice and guidance
- Training support
For more information please visit the WorkZone website
Employment and financial support
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (furlough) ended on 30 September 2021. Claims for September must be submitted on or before 14 October 2021. Any amendments must be made on or before 28 October 2021.
- check if you can get statutory sick pay (SSP)
- check if you're eligible for Universal Credit
- check if you're eligible for Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
- get an isolation note to give to your employer
- your rights if your hours are cut or you’re laid off
- what to do if you cannot pay your tax bill on time.
Paying for your gas and electricity
The government winter support fund has launched to help struggling families with essentials such as food and heating costs. We will publish details about how this will be distributed when we know more from the government.
Your energy supplier can work with you to agree a payment plan so do contact your supplier as soon as you can if you are worried about paying your energy bills. More information about how to do this can be found on the Ofgem website here
- Getting help if you can't afford your energy bills | Ofgem
- Energy bills are rising – and what you can do about it | Ofgem
- Find schemes, grants and benefits to help with home energy | Ofgem
Help with fuel bills
Warm Home Discount Scheme (www.gov.uk)
You could get £140 off your electricity bill for winter 2021 to 2022 under the Warm Home Discount Scheme. The scheme opens on 18 October 2021.
Cold Weather Payment (www.gov.uk)
You may get a Cold Weather Payment if you’re getting certain benefits.
Winter Fuel Payment (www.gov.uk)
The Winter Fuel Payment is usually paid automatically if you’re eligible.
Customers with prepayment meters who are self-isolating or unable to leave their home to top up their meter should contact their supplier immediately to discuss options.
These may include:
- someone being sent to top up your prepayment card or token/key
- having funds added to your meter credit
- having a preloaded gas or electricity card sent to you in the post.
If you do not have enough money to top up your prepayment meter you can apply for support through the local welfare fund on 020 7745 6464. Check with your utility provider first, as the government has made arrangements with some that financial support be granted directly to you.
Advice to help you improve energy efficiency and save money
Green Doctors is a charity who helps residents save money, stay warm, and improve energy efficiency in their homes. You can find out about their services online and on the phone.
Paying rent or mortgage
We can provide advice, support and guidance if you’re having difficulty in paying the rent.
This may include setting up a payment plan, or supporting you to claim benefits such as Universal Credit or Employment Support Allowance,
Please contact the rental income team on 020 8753 6032 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Our phone line is open 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.
If you are a private renter, we are urging all landlords not to evict a tenant who can’t pay the rent as a result of the coronavirus. However, if you are struggling to pay your rent you can apply for Universal Credit. If you are already receiving Universal Credit or housing benefit you can apply for a Discretionary Housing Payment.
If you’re a homeowner, please call your mortgage provider to explain your change in circumstances, you may be able to pause mortgage payments for up to three months.
Free school meals
H&F Food Guide
For those who are able to use them, we want to make sure that our foodbanks are operating well and that they have food supplies and volunteers to support them.
Contact details for organisations who can advise about benefits and financial difficulties
H&F Law Centre
020 3880 1727
Monday – Thursday 10am-12pm, 3pm to 5pm
020 7052 0318
Monday to Friday 9:30 – 5pm
H&F Citizens Advice
General enquiries 0300 330 1162
Help to Claim UC Number - 0800 144 8 444
Monday – Friday 10am – 4pm
020 8746 7718
Welfare Benefits team
020 8753 5566
Monday & Friday 9am – 12.30pm
Wednesday 1.30pm - 4.30pm
Local welfare fund
020 7041 6464
020 7460 2620
Monday to Friday 9am to 4pm