Many families reaching out to us through the WellChild COVID-19 Direct Response Team have reported financial challenges. Here are some useful organisations who can offer financial advice and support during the coronavirus crisis.
Benefits and Tax Credits
It can be confusing knowing which benefit you should apply for and what you are entitled too, especially during these times where new schemes are being created all the time. However, there are several places you can seek support and information about what you are entitled to.
Turn2Us helps people in financial need gain access to welfare benefits, charitable grants and other financial help – online, by phone and face-to-face through their partner organisations. They have a handy benefits calculator you can complete online that will identify what means tested support you are entitled to.
Contact is a charity for families with disabled children. They support families with guidance and information and have a free helpline offering lots of advice including financial matters. You can contact them on 0808 808 3555. They also provide families with a helpful parent guide to money matters which you can download for free here: contact.org.uk/media/1532074/money_matters.pdf
If you are already in receipt of means tested benefits but your income has reduced because of Coronavirus, contact the relevant office paying you this benefit so they can reassess your payment and advise you accordingly.
Family Fund Grants & Support
Family Fund are helping families across the UK who are raising a disabled or seriously ill child or young person aged 17 or under. An extra £10 million has been made available as emergency funding in response to the crisis presented by the Coronavirus pandemic and will help more parents and carers to look after their children.
Families can apply for grants to make their lives easier while implementing social distancing measures, including computers and tablets, outdoor play equipment and sensory toys. For full eligibility criteria and grant applications visit: www.familyfund.org.uk/FAQs/are-we-eligible-to-apply
The Money Advice Service
Free and impartial money advice set up by the government including debt advice, mortgage advice, budgeting and saving, work and benefits, and family and care. Support is available over the phone and online. There is a section on Coronavirus and your money which can be found here moneyadviceservice.org.uk/en/articles/coronavirus-and-your-money Call 0800 138 1677 to speak to someone on the phone.
The Citizens Advice Bureau
The Citizens Advice Bureau provides advice on what to do if you can’t pay your bills because of coronavirus; this includes advice on mortgages, council tax, energy bills, court orders and tax bills. There is also a helpful link to check if you think you have received a suspected scam email/letter about a bill. citizensadvice.org.uk/debt-and-money/if-you-cant-pay-your-bills-because-of-coronavirus/
The Citizens Advice Bureau will also be able to help with advice on benefits, universal credit, access to food banks and grants. Find your local branch here: citizensadvice.org.uk/about-us/contact-us/contact-us/contact-us/
The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army can also help with money worries as well as food boxes if you urgently need food. Find your nearest Salvation Army and the services they can provide here: salvationarmy.org.uk/map-page
Gingerbread is a charity supporting single parent families to live secure, happy and fulfilling lives. They have some great financial advice around managing money and debt including how to search for grants which you may be eligible for, budgeting tools and advice on maximising your income. gingerbread.org.uk/information/managing-money-and-debt/
They also have a specific section with Coronavirus FAQ’s including advice on staying at home, self-isolation and shopping as a single parent. gingerbread.org.uk/coronavirus/coronavirus-faqs/
You can also call Gingerbread’s Helpline on 0808 802 0925.
Information and advice on financial support for working families during COVID-19 including topics such as furlough, redundancy, rights for carers, new and future parents, returning to work safely, free school meals for children and information for self-employed people. For more information and further contact visit