Enhanced financial support available for those most vulnerable

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The Household Support Fund is dedicated to supporting those most in need, particularly in relation to food costs and essential bills. This funding has been provided by the Department of Work and Pensions and is open for applications until Friday 24 March 2023.  

Bracknell Forest Council has been distributing this funding in several ways, including through the current Local Welfare Scheme. Those who are unable to meet the costs of everyday essentials, have the option to apply for further support.  

This application-based support is particularly for those who do not automatically qualify for other cost of living support schemes. It offers support for basic living costs, including energy bills, food, and the cost of essential items to help you remain in your home. 

Eligible residents can apply for support through 2 routes:  

  • to help with energy, food and essentials – apply through the main Local Welfare Scheme
    • this is based on the council’s existing assessment criteria and will include a financial assessment of residents’ income and assets
    • more information is available on the Local Welfare Scheme webpage
  • to help with costs of food – apply through the winter family cost of living voucher scheme
    • this is a one-off award of £45 for low-income families not eligible for the school distributed vouchers
    • more information on eligibility and how to apply is on the Household Support Fund webpage

Cllr Dr Gareth Barnard, executive member for children, young people and learning, said:  

“There are currently many households facing increased financial pressure, leading to them having to make difficult choices. The council wishes to support those households as early as possible. Please check your eligibility on the council’s website and apply by 24 March for local financial support.   

“The Local Welfare Scheme can provide one-off grants in emergencies and help with the cost of essential items that are difficult to budget for. It helps to ease the financial pressure for residents in our borough, who have low incomes and who may otherwise go without basic essentials.”  

For more information, advice and the range of local and national support available, please visit the cost of living webpages