Find help with food, childcare, energy and other living costs
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
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
- food banks (a list of food banks is available on our food banks page)
- low-cost food pantries (a list of food pantries is available on our food banks page)
- community fridges help people and local businesses share food, rather than letting it go to waste (find your nearest community fridge)
- fruit and veg vouchers for children and families (find out how to register for fruit and veg vouchers)
- Southwark's Food and Fun programme supports families during the Easter, summer and winter school holidays to access free, healthy food and fun enriching activities
- if you're pregnant or have children under four, you may be eligible for help to buy healthy food and milk from the Healthy Start scheme
- the Food Bus is a double-decker bus that stops in different parts of London and offers groceries and cupboard items at affordable prices; every Wednesday the bus comes to Kennington and Stockwell - find the times and locations of the food bus
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.
Transport for London 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.
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.
Find out about help to pay your energy bills, energy debt, ways of saving energy and grants to help to make your home more energy efficient.
Extra energy bill support for those who use district heating or communal heat networks is available through the Energy Bills Relief Scheme Further support will be available from 31 March 2023.
Energy Price Guarantee from 1 October 2022 to 30 June 2023
A new ‘Energy Price Guarantee’ was introduced on 1 October 2022. This means a typical UK household will pay no more than £2,500 a year on their energy bill. This is automatic and applies to all households. The guarantee is due to end in June 2023. From July 2023 until the end of March 2024, the guarantee will cap typical energy bills at no more than £3,000.
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.
Citizen’s Advice has information on grants from energy suppliers, prepayment meters 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.
Home improvement funding to reduce your winter fuel bills
You can apply for home energy improvements and savings from the Mayor of London. Until 31 March 2023, eligible households could get a grant of up to £25,000 to improve their home and save on energy bills.
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're 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.
Find current petrol and diesel prices
Join our green savers email list to get regular tips to help you save money and reduce your carbon footprint.
Page last updated: 14 July 2023