Find help with food, childcare, energy and other living costs

Contents

Help if you can’t afford food
Help with childcare costs
Help with transport costs
Help with healthcare costs
Help to pay for fuel and energy costs  
How to save money by reducing energy bills        
Help with phone and internet costs 

Help if you can't afford food 

Get support if you can’t afford food, find out how to buy low cost food including fruit and veg

Southwark Community Support Alliance

If you or someone you know is in crisis and needs immediate help with food, contact the Southwark Community Support Alliance as your first step. They will be able to organise foodbank or shopping help and can link you up to help and support in the community. Find out more about getting food support from the Southwark Food Action Alliance.

Food banks, food pantries and community fridges

Find out about a range of food schemes  like: 

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Help with childcare costs

You can find out how you can save on childcare costs on the Childcare Choices website

The Help for Households website includes more information on help with childcare costs.

Clothes and equipment for babies and children under five 

Little Village provides families with good quality second-hand clothes and equipment. If you need help with basic essentials for your children ask a voluntary organisation, health visitor or midwife to refer you to Village HQ. 

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Help with transport costs

The Transport for London website has a list of railcards and travel discounts, including discounts for children, teenagers, students, apprentices, unemployed people, people with disabilities, veterans, and people over 60. 

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Help with healthcare costs

You can get professional health care advice, treatments, and medicines for common illnesses from some local pharmacies, without the need for an appointment. If you don't pay for your prescriptions, any medicine recommended to you from these pharmacies will be free.

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Help to pay for fuel and energy costs

Find out about help to pay your energy bills, the Council Tax rebate, energy debt, ways of saving energy and grants to help to make your home more energy efficient.

Extra help is available to everyone who pays for electricity this winter through the Energy Bills Support Scheme – starting from October 2022.

If you are eligible for the Warm Home Discount scheme, you will automatically get a one-off discount on your electricity bill this winter. 

Energy price guarantee from 1 October 2022   

From 1 October 2022, a new ‘energy price guarantee’ will mean a typical UK household will pay no more than £2,500 a year on their energy bill for the next two years. This is automatic and applies to all households. 

Grants and benefits to help you pay your energy bills

You may be able to get help if you can’t afford your energy bills or top up your prepayment meter. You might be able to get certain benefits, grants and help offered by the Government and energy suppliers.

(a list of grants to help pay for energy debts is included in Southwark's cost of living support booklet) (pdf, 353kb)

Citizen’s Advice has information on grants from energy suppliers and benefits to help you pay fuel bills.

They also have information on how to apply for grants if you have energy debts.

British Gas Energy Trust grants even if you aren’t a customer

If you can’t get a grant from your energy supplier, you might be able to get a grant from the British Gas Energy Trust. These grants are available to anyone – you don’t have to be a British Gas customer. You’ll need to get advice from a debt adviser by completing this form before applying for a British Gas Energy Trust grant.

If you've already spoken to a debt adviser check if you can get a grant from the British Gas Energy Trust.

The Help for Households website includes information on help with energy costs

Home improvement funding to reduce your winter fuel bills

You can apply for home energy improvements and savings from the Mayor of London. Eligible households could get a grant of up to £25,000 to improve their home and save on energy bills.

Apply for money to make your home warmer

Get energy help with the Southwark Energy Savers service

If you live or work in Southwark, or are a private landlord renting out property in Southwark, and you are struggling to pay your energy bills, you can get advice from Southwark Energy Savers service. You may also be able to get help with paying your bills.

Contact the Southwark Energy Savers service

Find current petrol and diesel prices

You can find out about current UK petrol & diesel prices via confused.com

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How to save money by reducing energy bills               

Read the UK Government's advice on how to reduce your energy bills.

Get advice on reducing your energy bills and lowering your carbon emissions from the Energy Saving Trust.

Find information on how to save money and reduce your carbon footprint on the Southwark Council Climate Emergency pages.

Read the Help for Households energy saving advice to help with your bills

Join our green savers email list to get regular tips to help you save money and reduce your carbon footprint.

Join our green savers email list

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Help with phone and internet costs

You can check and apply for low-cost internet and phone tariffs on the Ofcom website.

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Page last updated: 02 December 2022

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