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Money and Debt Advice
Benefits, grants and support
- Most benefits claims are dealt with by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), but there are some occasions where people need to claim Housing Benefit from the Council. Please see our Benefits and Support page for more information, or go to the Gov.UK website.
- Free school meals are administered by Devon County Council for all Devon maintained schools. They are also responsible through a traded agreement for free school meals with Devon academies. You can also Call 0345 155 1019.
- The DWP offer Budgeting Loans to people in receipt of benefits to help cover the costs of unexpected expenses. This could be furniture and household goods, costs linked to moving house, funerals or maternity costs. They are interest free and repayments are taken from your benefits.
- The Household Support Fund can help if you are facing hardship or emergency, including struggling to pay bills or afford food.
- You can find help to buy food and milk for children under four or mothers over 10 weeks pregnant at Healthy Start website.
- Citizens Advice has a range of information if you are struggling financially. You can get help with the cost of living, help with debt, budgeting, mortgage problems and much more.
- The Independent Food Aid network has produced a series of referral leaflets to help people identify who is best to contact for help.
- Friends of the Elderly provides grants to older people living on low incomes.
- COSARAF Charitable Foundation can provide grants of up to £2,000 from their hardship fund. Find out more on their website.
Other Sources of help
- If you're a homeowner, you might be able to get help towards interest payments on your mortgage or loans you've taken out for certain repairs and improvements to your home. This help is called Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI). You can find out more at the Gov.UK website.
- The government MoneyHelper website has guidance and advice on managing your money in uncertain times, along with everything you need to know about the cost of living support package as well as advisors who can support you.
- National Debtline is a debt advice charity run by the Money Advice Trust with a free and confidential debt advice service.
- Money Saving Expert is a consumer website that provides lots of advice on how to cut costs and save money, including a cost of living crisis survival guide.
- Turn2us is a national charity that helps people in financial need gain access to welfare benefits, charitable grants and other financial help.
- Homemaker provides debt advice and support to access various grants for people in hardship.
- PinPoint - a website which offers a wide range of support services within the Devon Community.
- Okehampton Charities can provide a crisis grant up to £250 - low income and for example cooker blowing up. Available to people living in Okehampton and surrounding hamlets (Brightley, Southcott, Meldon and Stockley).
- Wisermoney is a charitable organisation providing a range of support services across Devon and Somerset including money, benefits, and debts advice, and financial education.