If you live in Wandsworth, you may be eligible for extra emergency financial help
Wandsworth residents can visit Wandsworth Council’s new Cost of Living online hub for lots of useful information to help local people and families with cost of living pressures, or you can phone 0808 175 3339 to speak to an adviser (closed Bank holidays).
This includes information about support grants from Wandsworth Council for residents on low incomes who can’t afford essential costs like rent, council tax, food and energy costs. These are grants not loans, so you won’t need to pay them back.
You can also apply if you’ve been housed by Wandsworth Council in temporary housing in another borough.
Crisis grants for food, gas and electricity
You can apply for a crisis grant from Wandsworth Council, up to 3 times in 12 months. These are supermarket vouchers (from £35-55 per person in your household, up to a maximum award of £230), and gas and electricity vouchers for pre-payment meters only (£15 or £25 on each, depending on household size).
Residents who do not have online access can go to the Customer Centre at Wandsworth Town Hall for assistance. If you have difficulties attending the Customer Centre, you can phone Wandsworth Council on 020 8871 6000 for help applying – or try the Cost of Living helpline on 0808 175 3339.
Discretionary housing payment
You can apply for a discretionary housing payments (DHP) if you’re receiving Housing Benefit or Universal Credit (including a housing element), and need extra help with housing costs because your benefit doesn’t cover your full rent. This can include covering a shortfall for bedroom tax, if you’re waiting to downsize or willing to consider downsizing.
Community care grant
You can apply for a community care grant for essential white goods (eg cooker, fridge with a small freezer compartment) and essential furniture like beds or a table and chairs, if you’re experiencing hardship and are in receipt of qualifying benefits. We understand that in exceptional circumstances (for instance if you’re a carer for a disabled family member), the Council will consider a grant for a washing machine.
Other sources of financial help include:
Free online benefits checker
It’s estimated that more than seven million UK households could be missing out on benefits. You can check you’re receiving all the benefits that you’re entitled to, using a free online benefits calculator like Turn2Us or Entitled To.
Council Tax Reduction
Council Tax Reduction helps people who are on a low income to pay part or all of their council tax. We meet many people who are eligible but don’t know about Council Tax Reduction. You can find out more about who is eligible or make a Council Tax Reduction claim on Wandsworth Council’s website. If you can’t access the online form, you can call 020 8871 8081 for assistance.
Council tax discount
You can get 25% off your Council Tax bill if you live in Wandsworth Borough and you’re the only adult living in your home. This is different from Council Tax Reduction. You can find out more online about Council Tax discounts from Wandsworth Council, or apply online for a Single Person Discount.
Warm Home Discount
The Warm Home Discount is a one-off payment to help with the cost of energy during the winter, if you’re on a very low income or pension credit. This winter (2022-23) it’s worth £150, and is separate from the Winter Fuel Payment and Cold Weather Payment. Most eligible households will receive their Warm Home Discount automatically this year. You can also check out the Charis’ website, which shows any schemes available from energy providers which can provide extra support to people on a low income.
NHS Healthy Start scheme for families with young children
If you’re more than 10 weeks pregnant or have a child under 4, you may be entitled to get help to buy healthy food and milk from NHS Healthy Start. If you’re eligible, you’ll be sent a Healthy Start card with money on it that you can use in some UK shops. Your money will be added onto this card every 4 weeks. You can apply by emailing [email protected] or phoning 0300 330 7010. Find out more here.
Wandsworth Council School Uniform Support Scheme
New this year, we welcome Wandsworth Council’s school uniform grants for local children who receive free school meals, who are starting primary or secondary school in Wandsworth Borough in autumn 2022. Families who are eligible will be contacted directly. However Wandsworth families who think they’re eligible for Free School Meals but haven’t received an email voucher, can contact: [email protected]
If you’re not sure whether your child is eligible for Free Schools Meals, you can check online.
JobCentre Plus Travel discount
If you’re unemployed and receiving Universal Credit or Jobseekers Allowance, you may be eligible for a JobCentre Plus Travel Discount, which gives 50% off pay-as-you-go adult fares to travel on bus, Tube, tram, DLR, London Overground, Elizabeth line (except between West Drayton and Reading) and most National Rail services in London. More information here.