When dealing with debt problems or any other circumstances that reap your finances, you may find it hard to satisfy your essentials. If this happens, you should know where to get help for money and how you can access food banks. In this post, you’ll know the alternatives where to seek financial help at the time of emergencies.
There can be several reasons why an individual is in the state of financial difficulty. One might lose a job, which resulted to insufficient income. This can be hard to manage, especially when there are additional expenses.
For several individuals, times are made tougher due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Most people endure the effects of reduced income, opportunities, and high demands of essentials. If you need further information, support and guidance on how you can get back on track with your finances, we’ll be happy to help. Call us on 0800 193 1024.
Where Can I Borrow Money During Emergencies?
You can check for an available aid or schemes offered by the government, which can help you get quick access for emergency loans. This is the most sensible way to have easy access to funds during emergencies. It’s way better compared to payday loans or any form of expensive credits.
Can I Have Payment Holiday from My Debts?
Because of the current COVID-19 outbreak, most creditors are considering payment holidays for those who are coping with their debt payments.
Help with Food
How can I Find My Local Food Bank?
You can try to check if you have access to a local food bank in your area. In the UK, Trussel Trust is known as the largest with over 1,200 foodbanks throughout the UK. The organization has a website where you can find your nearest foodbank.
For you to gain access, you must be designated by one of the following organization:
- A children’s centre
- Your local authority
- Citizens Advice
- Police or probation workers
- Jobcentre Plus
- A social worker
- A GP, health visitor or other medical professional
If you are not in contact with any of these seven organization, you can inquire from your local food bank to ask for assistance.
How Foodbank Works?
Once you are designated or referred to a foodbank, you’ll be provided with a letter or voucher. A foodbank may supply you with the following items depending on your necessities:
- Meals sufficient for a few days
- toiletries and other household goods or items
- small credit for gas and electric pre-payments
- access to other available help according to your necessities
School Meals for Free
If you have entitlements for child benefits, it might be possible for you to qualify for free school meals. This can minimize your daily expenses.
In line with the measures in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic, schools are being urged to have their kitchens open to distribute free school meals. However, the government is shifting to a voucher scheme to guarantee that qualified kids will have sufficient aid.
How can I get help with utility bills?
When barely coping with your utilities, keep in touch with your supplier and let them know of your financial difficulty. This way, they can discuss available alternatives for you.
In some cases, some suppliers have measures in place to aid their customers who have money problems. The measures may vary from one supplier to the other. With regards to pre-payment meters, some foodbanks may provide small credits to aid you.
Can Credit Union Help Me?
One way to find out is to inquire in the local credit union in your area. Credit unions are local cooperatives that cater to savings and loans fr their members. Their primary goal is to:
- Provide low-interest loans
- Help for those needing financial advice
- Encourage their members to make regular savings
Financial Help From the Government
You can try to find out from your local Jobcentre Plus about hardship payments, or you can contact the Department of Work and Pensions on 0345 608 8545 to inquire.
These are accessible for individuals with:
- Jobseeker’s Allowance or JSA
- Employment and Support Allowance or ESA
- Universal Credit or UC
This is considering that your benefits have been ceased and you’re needing money for the essential living costs. If you’re among the vulnerable person, or someone acting as the person of care for vulnerable individuals, you’ll be eligible for this benefit.
Help from Local Council
In some cases, you may try considering your local welfare assistance scheme. These are for individuals with low income and are struggling financially. Each local authority has its own set of criteria for you to qualify. Some of which offers loans or grants used furniture or food vouchers.
Emergency Funding Across the UK:
- Local Council Authority (England)
- Discretionary Assistance Fund (Wales)
- Finance Support (Northern Ireland)
- Scottish Welfare Fund (Scotland)
Social Fund Loans
If you’re getting benefits for income support, JSA, ESA, or pension credits for at least 26 weeks, and there has been a sudden cost to cover – you might qualify for a budgeting loan.
The amount you’ll be granted depends on your circumstances. The least amount you can apply for is £100. Payments to a budgeting loan are diminished from your benefits.
You can also utilise budgeting loans to satisfy payments for:
- Moving expenses
- Maternity costs
- Travel expenses
Short-term Benefit Advance
You might also be eligible for a short-term benefit advances from several benefits. This is an advance payment given to you and to which repayments are deducted from your future benefits. This is likely done over 12 weeks period. You will be eligible for short-term benefit advance under the following conditions:
- You need money before securing first payments on your benefit claim
- There’s a need for urgent funds prior to the increase in your benefit payments
- Benefit payments are not complied on its due date due to certain circumstances such as technical issues during the process
What other benefits can I apply for?
When checking for benefits or grants that you can be eligible, it can help you improve your circumstances. You might consider checking Turn2Us if you’re finding for grants or benefits that you can qualify.
Can I qualify for a crisis loan?
Instead of a crisis loan, social fund loan is being recommended for people.
Is there available support for mental health issues?
Mind – help with people suffering from mental health problems by providing support and advice.
The Samaritans – offers ranges of support services that you can call for support and aid
Debt Advice UK – Offer free debt advice and helps you get back on your finances and put your debts under control
Can I get assistance if I’m pregnant?
If you’re pregnant, you’ll be entitled to free NHS dental treatment and prescription. You are entitled to these benefits up until you gave birth.
If you’re pregnant and your behalf is already receiving benefits stated below, yet you’re expecting to have your first child, you can check for a Sure Start Maternity Grant.
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Income Support
- Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Pension Credit
- Child Tax Credit
- Working Tax Credit covering disability or serious disability component
- Universal Credit
What should I do is I can’t pay my rent?
When you can’t pay your rent, make sure you let your creditor know about your financial circumstances. This way, you can agree on certain arrangement regarding your rent arrears.
You might try checking for housing benefit eligibility or check housing advice through Shelter.
If you have Housing Benefit or Universal Credit but can’t manage your rent, you can secure a discretionary housing payment or DHP with your local council.
What help is available if I am in the forces have been in the forces?
SSAFA which stands for Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association is a charity known to offer help for individuals who are currently in the Forces, or those who have served. If you are one, they can give you ranges of support concerning housing, household essentials, and matters concerning health. For more details, you can check the SSAFA website.