The aim of this focus page is to offer materials to support families and communities through this cost-of-living crisis.
This page offers information and links to the following resources:
- Welsh Government Guidance ‘Get help with the cost of living’ and ‘Here to Help with the cost of living’ Campaign
- Welsh Government Fuel Support Scheme
- Home Safety and Fire and Rescue Services
- UK Government campaign: Help for Households
- UK Government campaign: Cost of living
- Eight education subsidies and schemes for learners
- ACE ‘Crisis Hour’ service:
- Map of food banks across Wales
- Additional help and advice
Welsh Government Guidance: Get help with the cost of living
Welsh Government have made help and advice available to assist you. From living cost, housing, and benefits, to school and childcare expenses and health and wellbeing.
For more information read our blog Claim What’s Yours about the Welsh Government campaign with the same name.
Welsh Government has launched a new campaign called Here to Hep with the cost of living. The campaign aims to reassure the people of Wales that help, and support is available for those struggling financially due to the cost-of-living crisis.
We also advice checking what your local authority is offering by visiting their website.
Welsh Government Fuel Support Scheme
The Welsh Government Fuel Support Scheme is part of a £90m fuel support package to address immediate pressures on living costs.
From the 26 September 2022 to 28 February 2023 eligible households in Wales may be able to claim a one-off £200 payment from their local council to provide support towards their fuel costs.
Applications can be made to local authorities via their website when the scheme opens on 26 September 2022. Find your local authority.
Home Safety and Fire and Rescue Services
With the cost of living crisis affecting people’s ability to pay their rising energy bills, concerns have been highlighted about the potential impacts of people using alternative means of heating their homes.
The Fire and Rescue Services offer a wide range of safety advice to help keep you and your home safe from fire and other hazards, and offer a home safety visit to those who need it. A visit will include free home safety advice and equipment such as smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms if they are needed.
You can get in touch with the services today by completing the online form on their websites (links below) or by calling the freephone number 0800 1691234.
- Request a visit – South Wales Fire and Rescue Service (southwales-fire.gov.uk) (covers Blaenau Gwent, Bridgend, Caerphilly, Cardiff, Monmouthshire, Merthyr Tydfil, Newport, Rhondda Cynon Taff, Torfaen, Vale of Glamorgan)
- Free smoke alarm – At home – Keeping You Safe – North Wales Fire And Rescue Service (gov.wales) (covers Isle of Anglesey, Gwynedd, Conwy, Denbighshire, Flintshire and Wrexham)
- Safe and Well Visit – Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service (mawwfire.gov.uk) (covers Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion, Swansea, Neath and Port Talbot, Pembrokeshire and Powys)
UK Government campaign: Help for Households
The UK Government has launched the Help for Households campaign which draws together information on the support packages it has put in place to help ease the impact of the cost of living crisis. There are 41 schemes available to support citizens, all of which can be found on the following categories.
UK Government campaign: Cost of living
The aim is to make millions of vulnerable households receive at least £1,200 from the Government this year to help cover rising costs. There are specific payments for those on means tested benefits, for pensioners, those on disability benefits and to help people with energy bills.
Eight education subsidies and schemes for learners
- Learners who are currently eligible for free school meals can apply for a grant towards school uniform, school trips, and kit. The grant this year is for £225 per learner, or £300 for those going into year 7 to recognise the increased costs associated with starting secondary school.
- 16 to 18-year-olds who want to continue in education could be eligible for Education Maintenance Allowance. This is a weekly payment of £30 to help with the costs of further education such as transport or meals. Student Finance Wales has more information on the EMA and how to apply.
- If you are studying further education either at your local school or college, you may be able to get help with transport costs. Your local authority or college will have more information and guidance on how to apply for support.
- Free school meals are available to eligible pupils who attend school full-time. This includes full time school-based nursery pupils, right through to school-based sixth form pupils. You need to apply for free school meals, so it’s important to check if you might be eligible. You can do this on your local authority’s website.
- As part of the Schools Love Reading scheme, every pupil in Wales who is aged 3-16 and in state school will receive a book of their own to keep. Find out more about the scheme by reading our blog Schools Love Reading programme is launched.
- From September 2022, a new e-learning resource will be piloted for 16 to 18-year-olds who attend school, college or an apprenticeship scheme, to improve their oral Welsh skills. access to free Welsh lessons with the National Centre for Learning Welsh.
- Get a free Microsoft Office 365 license through Hwb. Hwb is a website with lots of free apps and software which help pupils in Wales learn. All teachers and learners have a Hwb account which gives them access to educational resources and digital tools.
- The Financial Contingency Fund supports eligible learners in further education institutions or the Open University, who are facing financial difficulties or whose access to further education might be limited by financial considerations. Each institution will determine the eligibility of learners and the support they can provide. Those who would like to apply for support can get more information from their college, or the Open University.
Find out more about these subsidies and schemes by visiting the Welsh Government website Financial support available for learners and their families.
ACE ‘Crisis Hour’ service:
This is a service offering immediate crisis support.
The service (starting on Monday 17th of January) will be held daily at Dusty Forge in Cardiff between the hours of 9am and 10am. No appointment is needed and if you turn up between these times you will be seen. You can also contact the office on 02920 003132 if you have any questions.
The aim of these appointments is to ensure you are able to eat and keep warm.
ACE will continue to offer their usual appointments for more in depth support on Mondays and Thursdays between 10am and 1pm. Appointments are required for this service and can be made by contacting the office on 02920 003132.
Map of food banks across Wales
Here at Family & Community we created a map of food banks across Wales. Check out which is your closest.
We also advise checking out this apps in your area to help you cut food cost:
The Too Good To Go app lets customers buy and collect Magic Bags of delicious food from cafes, restaurants, hotels, shops and manufacturers about to go to waste because it hasn’t been sold in time. Through this app costumers can access this food at a great price directly from businesses.
OLIO connects neighbours with each other and with local businesses so surplus food can be shared, not thrown away. This could be food nearing its sell-by date in local stores, spare home-grown vegetables, bread from your baker, or the groceries in your fridge when you go away. OLIO can also be used for non-food household items, too.
Additional help and advice can be found through the following resources:
- Cheaper broadband and phone packages / social tariffs can provide a safety net for eligible households who might be struggling to afford their broadband or mobile services: Cheaper broadband and phone packages – Ofcom.
- The National Energy Action offers courses for assisting households with fuel poverty, energy efficiency, decarbonisation and more. Keep an eye on our Events Page, we will advertise some of these courses there.