Emergency welfare support

If you are a Herefordshire resident needing emergency support you may be eligible for help through our local welfare provision scheme.

Or, if you are struggling to pay for food or energy bills you can apply for financial support through the Household Support Fund.

As the rules for each scheme are different we realise that people may be confused about which one to apply for, so we've made it easier - only one application is required.

Our Talk Community customer services team will decide the best fund to help you based on the information you provide with your application.

Local Welfare Provision

This scheme is intended to meet crucial needs of a person or household who have an unexpected crisis, or urgent need that is noticeably different from the usual pressures related to managing on a low income. We give each application careful consideration, which will include looking at other sources of help and support which may be available.

If you are eligible, we will offer help in one of the following ways:

  • Providing quality, second-hand goods, wherever possible via direct referrals to suppliers
  • Provision of food or vouchers (we are not able to provide cash or loans)
  • Referrals to support organisations

If we identify that you are not claiming all the benefits you are entitled to, we will help you with your claim. You may also be directed to apply to the Department for Work and Pensions for a budgeting loan or advance. This may be instead of claiming support under this scheme.

With your permission we can also assess your support needs. This support, for example, could include:

  • Access to help dealing with money worries and debt
  • Referrals to other organisations that provide specialist advocacy and prevention services

Household Support Fund

This scheme aims to support Herefordshire residents who need our help the most during the cost of living crisis, including people who have not been eligible for the other types of support the government has made available.

The funding is an extension of the Household Support Fund and has been allocated by the Department for Work and Pensions to councils in England, who will then use it to support those in need in their local area. It will be used to provide emergency support towards day to day living such as food, and energy bills for a limited time.

The Household Support Fund is there to help low income households. It provides immediate help for those who are struggling. This could include help with your energy, water, as well as other essentials such as food, clothing and hygiene products.

Who can apply

You can apply if you are:

  • A Herefordshire resident over 16 years old, or a member of the armed forces who can demonstrate a strong connection to Herefordshire
  • A legal resident in the UK, not under immigration control
  • A person or household experiencing financial hardship that is able to demonstrate the need for emergency support with essential living costs that cannot be met by other sources

How to apply

All applicants must make an application by phone 01432 383838, or by completing our online application form.

When we receive the application and bank statements an officer may contact you to gather more information. They may ask for other information or evidence, such as proof of identity, and information about money coming in and money that must be paid out. You will be expected to upload your bank statements showing transactions and balance on account for all accounts held so that they can see what essential costs you are struggling to pay for. If you have several accounts in which you transfer money to and from we will require you to upload these statements also.

Please note we are unable to assess your application unless up to date bank statements are provided. We will, however, accept screenshots of transactions made as long as we can see a balance on accounts.

All applications will be treated fairly and consistently. Applications will be processed within 2 - 5 working days, but this may be longer due to demands for the service.

Find out what other support is available to help with the cost of living. This includes income and disability benefits, bills and allowances, childcare, housing and travel.