As part of wider welfare reform changes, social fund community care grants and crisis loans have been abolished as of April 2013.
You will no longer be able to apply for these awards through the DWP national helpline.
You may still be eligible for help from your local council if your need is high priority and either you or your family are at risk of significant harm, either to your health or to your safety, or you are experiencing exceptional pressure.
Please note that cash will not be provided.
You will not be eligible for a crisis payment if:
- your benefits have been disallowed or you are under benefit sanction, you will need to apply for a DWP Hardship Payment (form JSA 10)
- you cannot manage until your first benefit pay day or first wage when going back to work, you will need to apply for a Short-Term Advance from the DWP
You may also be able to apply for a budgeting loan from the DWP (form SF500).
Contact your Job Centre Plus (0345 6043719) or refer to GOV.UK for information and forms if this applies to you.
If you cannot answer ‘yes’ to the following 4 qualifying questions, you will also not be eligible for an award:
- are you over 16?
- are you ordinarily a resident in Poole and/or have a local connection to Poole?
- have you sought help from elsewhere, for example other organisations, friends and family?
- is there no other way of preventing a serious risk to your health and safety?
Please also note that you will need to show proof of identity, proof of address, proof of your National Insurance number and (where possible) evidence of your crisis or emergency.
To be eligible for help, you must not be a person from abroad (not meeting the conditions of the ‘habitual residence test’) or have too much capital such as savings. You must first explore every other avenue of help, including friends and family.
Applying for a lifeline
Previously it was possible to apply for funding for a lifeline through the Community Care Grant fund. As this fund has now been abolished, if you believe you may be eligible for funding you will need to apply via the Crisis Payment scheme instead.
There must be an immediate threat to your health and safety, regardless of whether you have received funding previously from a Community Care Grant for this service. To qualify for assistance in paying towards a lifeline, you must have an assessed eligible need under The care Act 2014 and not have to contribute financially towards your package of care.
A maximum of 3 crisis payments will be made in any 12 month period from the date of your first application. All applications will be processed within a maximum period of 72 hours from the time of the original application.
Any award should be collected within 48 hours of issue. If you are unable to collect your award within this time, you must contact the advice line to discuss this. A member of the team may need to call you back as part of the application process. They will attempt to make contact 3 times, after which it is up to you to make contact.
To speak to the team, please call 01202 633713.
Opening times are Monday to Friday 9am to 12.30pm and 13.30pm to 4pm.
Page last updated: 09 January 2019