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Cost of Living resources

Grants available to individuals to assist in alleviating the current cost of living crisis


Government Support

In response to the cost of living crisis, the Government has launched a support package targeted at those most vulnerable households.

The support available includes:

  • £15 billion energy bill rebate package
  • £650 Cost of Living payment for those on benefits
  • £300 Pensioner Cost of Living Payment
  • £150 Disability Cost of Living Payment
  • The Warm Homes Discount
  • Winter Fuel Payments
  • Cold Weather Payments

Local Authority Help

Essex County Council may be able to help individuals to pay for things like:

  • energy and water bills;
  • food;
  • essential items such as for example clothes or household items such as cookers, etc.

This help is known as ‘welfare assistance’ or the ‘Household Support Fund’.


BBC Children in Need Emergency Essentials Programme

All applications must be made by a registered referrer

BBC Children in Need Emergency Essentials Programme supports children and young people who are facing exceptionally difficult circumstances, and is delivered by Family Fund Business Services. The programme provides items that meet a child’s most basic needs such as a bed to sleep in, a cooker to provide a hot meal and other items or services critical to a child’s wellbeing.  Applications can be made at any time.


British Gas Energy Support Fund

The fund will remain open until all the money invested has been awarded

The Trust has launched a new energy support fund to help the most financially vulnerable British Gas customers who are struggling to pay their energy bills. This fund has been set up in response to the increasing cost of living and rising inflation, including Ofgem’s most recent price cap increase. Through the fund eligible British Gas customers with fuel debt of £250 to £750 can apply for grants to help pay their energy bills over the coming months.


OVO Energy Fund

The OVO Energy Fund is a fund that helps people who’ve fallen behind with their energy payments to OVO. To qualify, individuals need to be in receipt of one of the following: Income Support, Job Seekers Allowance, Pension Credit, Employment and Support Allowance, or Universal Credit (but only if not working). In addition to qualify the energy debt on the energy account needs to be at least £150 and the annual household income is £16,190 or less.


EDF Customer Support Fund 

Applications can be submitted at any time

The EDF Customer Support Fund awards grants to vulnerable customer households. It aims to provide customers with a fresh start and financial stability. It can help households stay out of fuel debt and better able to afford ongoing energy costs. The Fund also offers grants to buy essential energy efficient white goods such as cookers, refrigerators, or washing machines.


Friends of the Elderly – Grants for Older People 

Applications can be submitted at any time

Friends of the elderly provide support for older people affected by loneliness and grants for those living on a low income. Through the Grants for Older People programme they provide grants of up to £400 to older people who are of/over state pension age and have savings of less than £4,000. Funding is currently being provided through four schemes: Home Essentials to help with the cost of replacing everyday items, small home repairs and mobility adaptations; Digital Connection to help older people get online; Financial Support to help with unexpected bills; and Essential Living Costs including clothing, food, medicines and books. Applications must be made via a third-party Referral Agent such as charities, local authority and social services representatives

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