Households can apply for help with energy bills, food costs and household essentials and need to ask their council what help is available from the Household Support Fund
An extra £421 million is available to help those most in need with food and energy costs this winter through the Household Support Fund.
The Government gave Dudley Council £2,625,519.07, Sandwell received £3,471,442.28, Staffordshire County Council received £5,506,547.99, Walsall Council received £2,819,810.19 and Wolverhampton Council was given £2,631,877.25
Victoria Prentis, Minister of State at the Department for Work and Pensions, said: "The Household Support Fund has been an important Government support scheme for many of those in need over the past year, and I’m very pleased that our decision to extend it means it will continue to help people with the costs of essentials – including food and energy – this winter.
“Millions of low-income families will have also received at least £1,200 from the Government to help with the cost of living, and our Energy Price Guarantee is helping households across the country heat their homes as the nights get longer.”
The Household Support Fund has supported a range of programmes across the country, including in Leicestershire, where the council has partnered with Leicester City Football Club to put on community cooking events for families in the area. Elsewhere, in Central Bedfordshire, the council worked with their local Disability Resource Centre to give over 150 disabled people £100 to help them with food, energy and clothing.
The fund comes on top of extensive Government support already in place to help with the cost of living this winter. Cost of living payments worth £650 are being paid to around eight million people on means-tested benefits, and six million disabled people are being paid a separate £150 Disability Cost of Living Payment, whilst over eight million pensioner households will receive an extra one-off £300 Winter Fuel Payment this year.
On top of this, a £400 reduction on energy bills is being given to all domestic electricity customers from October, and a £150 Council Tax rebate was delivered earlier this year to those in Council Tax bands A-D in England. This is in addition to a new ‘Energy Price Guarantee’, saving the average UK household at least £1,000 a year based on current energy prices.