THOUSANDS of struggling households have just hours left to apply for a £50 payment.
The cash is to help families pay for food and essentials and comes as part of the government’s Household Support Fund (HSF).
Councils have been given a slice of the new pot of funding on offer, which will be given out to struggling residents.
In North Devon thousands of households can get up to £50 to help with rising costs.
The first batch of vouchers were dished out at the end of November to eligible families who have six weeks to claim them.
All working age households who receive an element of council tax reduction received the money.
A second round of the payments are available to people to apply for too.
But, applications are being temporarily closed from tomorrow (December 20) at 12pm until January 3 so you have just hours to apply on this side of Christmas.
The application scheme only allows agreed third-party organisations to apply for the funds on behalf of their clients.
The council says this is because it’s a one-off payment and by engaging with one of the organisations people can continue to get help.
Third party agencies who can make the referrals include: Age UK Devon, Salvation Army, Citizens Advice Bureau and the NHS.
For the full list of 30+ agencies see the North Devon HSF webpage.
If you want to apply to the fund you’ll need to go through one of these organisations to be referred.
How much you get will depend on your circumstances and level of assistance needed.
Those who get the money will either get it in the form of a voucher to be redeemed at your closest Post Office in exchange for cash.
Or, you’ll get it in the form of a supermarket vouchers to use at major supermarkets.
All successful applicants, who apply by tomorrow, will have vouchers issued by Friday, December 23.
Make sure to keep an eye on the council’s website for updates about the scheme.
Can I get help if I don’t live in North Devon?
Yes – you can still get help under the Household Support Fund.
What support you can get will vary, because each council is in charge of how to spend the funding available.
Some decide to dish the help out automatically, while you’ll need to apply in other cases.
Some councils choose to distribute funding in the form of vouchers, while others give out cash payments.
To get more information on what support is available, and how to get it, you’ll need to contact your local council.
You can find yours using the gov.uk council checker tool.
What can I get?
Councils decide how to distribute their funding.
But in the last round of funding, you could get up to £500 in free cash support from some councils – like Bromsgrove and Redditch.
Residents of Effingham, near Guildford, could get up to £300 free cash to help them through the cost of living crisis.
Redcar and Cleveland Council has revealed that thousands of households can get up to £200 direct into their accounts.
Bradford council is also issuing a £65 payment to some residents this winter.
What other help can I get?
Millions of households started receiving a £400 energy bill discount from October 1.
Households will have already received a £66 energy bill discount in October and November’s will be coming soon if you haven’t had it already.
There will also be a payment worth £67 in December, January, February and March.
Households on pension credit or low incomes may qualify for the warm home discount scheme worth £150.
If you’re pregnant or have a child under the age of four, then you may qualify for Healthy Start vouchers to help pay for basic foods such as milk or fruit.
You can apply for free school meals for your child if you’re claiming certain benefits including Universal Credit.
British Gas has confirmed it’ll pay its most vulnerable customers grants worth £750 to help with sky-high bills.
For the full list of help available this winter see our guide.
Plus, here are five ways struggling families can get free cash to help pay for food this Christmas.
Do you have a money problem that needs sorting? Get in touch by emailing [email protected]
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