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Covid19 Local Support Fund

Purpose

Mid Devon District Council has set up an emergency fund to support people experiencing financial hardship because of the COVID19 pandemic.

Who can apply?

If you are:

  1. A Mid Devon Resident
  2. Over the age of 16
  3. Facing financial hardship

You may be able to apply for a one-off crisis payment to cover essentials such as food or other urgent needs.

If your financial situation has changed due to the Covid19 outbreak and, you have limited income to cover your immediate needs and no ready access to alternative sources of funds, you can apply for emergency funding to cover essential items such as food, energy bills or other essential items.

NB: Please check to see if you qualify for Universal Credit in the first instance as you can ask if you can receive an advance payment before you apply for the Local Support Fund.

What can I apply for?

Although individual needs will vary, we would expect requests for help to fall into one of these categories:


a) Basic Essential Needs - This includes items which you need for day-to-day living, such as:

  1. Food and other essential household items
  2. Items for personal care and hygiene
  3. Help with gas and electricity costs
  4. Prescriptions/medicine - if you are unable to afford to pay for them and are not exempt from charges

b) Overcoming Barriers to Support - Items to help you access the support and services you need during this time of crisis e.g:

  1. Mobile phone top-up
  2. Internet access
  3. Transport to access essential services

Alongside the emergency payments, you will be offered advice and guidance on how to manage your finances through this crisis and help with re-budgeting your household expenses.


PLEASE NOTE:

* The fund cannot assist with rent or mortgage payments. If you are having difficulty with your housing situation, please contact MDDC Housing on 01884 255255 or by email at homeless@middevon.gov.uk.

How do I apply?

In order to maintain social distancing guidelines, please fill out the form or call us on 01884 234387. Once your application has been processed, it will be referred to Churches Housing Action Team (CHAT) or NAVIGATE, who will be administering the fund on behalf of Mid Devon District Council. An advisor from one of these organisations will then contact you within one working day to discuss your specific needs.

How much can I apply for?

The amount of award is dependent on your current need but, as a guide, we would expect most grants to be for amounts of less than £200. The fund can only provide short-term assistance, sufficient to last you up to three weeks. If you still need support after that period you will have to apply again for assistance.

How will payments be made?

Dependent on the Scheme Provider, Hardship Fund payments will be made through vouchers or pre-paid cards for specific items rather than in cash or by cheque.

Do I need to pay the money back?

Awards are not repayable as they are grants and not loans.

What information will I need to provide?

In order to assess your need and the level of support we can offer and, so we can check whether you are eligible for further financial support through the Council Tax Reduction Scheme and other schemes, you will be asked to provide:

  1. Copies of your current and last month’s bank statement (you can email this as an electronic file or photo)
  2. National Insurance Number
  3. Council Tax Reference Number

Where evidence is not available the decision maker will use their discretion in regard to certain requirements.

Data Protection

The information you provide will be processed in accordance with the Data Protection Act for the purposes of processing your application and assessing you eligibility for an award or other help as mentioned in the guidelines.

The information will be shared with Churches Housing Action Team and Navigate CIO, who will be administering the grants on the Council’s behalf, and may be shared if appropriate with other departments within Mid Devon District Council and other statutory agencies.

The information provided will be stored securely in accordance with the Data Protection Act and will be destroyed after 7 years. The information will be subject to the Freedom of Information Act, but personal information will not be released in responses to Freedom of Information requests.