Croydon Discretionary Support grant scheme

Croydon Discretionary Support is a council run scheme that was created to help low income families on benefits or people faced by an exceptional emergency. Any type of support is paid at the discretion of the council, and they will issue awards to keep families together or address a crisis, such as lack of food or housing.

The scheme, also known as CDS, is in fact the borough’s version of welfare, and it replaces the grants that were previously issued by Department of Work and Pensions. The resources available are limited, and the Croydon council will only help people at most once per 12 months. More information on the application process as well as the types of bills that can be paid by the scheme are below.

Application criteria for grants

There are several eligible conditions, and the council is under no obligation to assist anyone. Also, the scheme is cash limited, and most clients will be provide a voucher for their costs or they are given the items directly. To apply for Discretionary Support in Croydon, all of the following and more may need to be met.

  • Applicants need to be local to Croydon, or moving to it.
  • Individuals seeking assistance need to be over the age of 16.
  • Low income guidelines are in place, or the applicant needs to be on benefits. Those that qualify are Income Support, Jobseekers Allowance, Council Tax Support, Universal Credit or Housing Benefit.
  • Grants may also be issued to the disabled.
  • Any assistance is as a last resort, and Croydon borough residents need to have applied for help from other alternatives first.

Also, the aim is to assist people in a one time crisis. So if someone is on a low income, but maybe have some other unexpected emergency, then grants may be issued in those cases. The intent is not to help those in chronic poverty that are not working towards independent living. The council will also only help at most once every 12 months.

Assistance available from Croydon Support scheme

The council will rarely, if ever, provide cash to claimants. Instead, much more likely will be a gift card or maybe a grant provided to the household. When funds are issued by the council, they will set requirements on what is provided. While the exact type of voucher provided can vary, some of the common expenses paid are as follows.

  • Emergency travel expenses, such as for a death or health care reason.
  • Fuel bill arrears to stop a disconnection or pay for the re-connection. Pre-paid cards are used for this.
  • Housing expenses, such as deposits or rent for women fleeing domestic violence or those in care.
  • Food needs are met. Either vouchers are issued, or a bag of groceries.
  • Replacement of items after a disaster, such as furniture for a home or clothing.

No matter what the Croydon council authorizes, as noted cash is not provided. Instead the resident will be given the item themselves, or they will be referrals or a voucher that specifics the support. So furniture may be given from a recycling center or the vouchers will direct clients to a food bank.

When seeking help from CDS for housing, the support issued will need to be used for keeping a family together. While the council will decide on the make up of this services, they may assist with a deposit if it allows the resident to move into a more affordable home, or provide furniture to a formerly homeless person. The rent in advance and other housing expenses can be paid where the person is not entitled to a DHP.

When applying, many types of documentation are required as part of welfare. The council team will need identification as well as proof of residents. They also need information on the person’s income as well as saving levels, and proof of hardship. The council will also review and verify all of this, using tax records and expenses.

To learn more on how to make a claim for an award from Discretionary Support, the Croydon Council support team can be called at 020 8760 5719. Or residents can drop in at Bernard Weatherill House, 8 Mint Walk, Croydon, CR0 1EA.


helen says:

Dear sir/madam I am a single mum with a 11 year old girl in Croydon.
I am working part time, and I am struggling to pay all my bills as my rent is £1100 a month. I have to pay £420 myself as well as the council tax and all bills. I am 30 weeks pregnant with my second child and have been told that I cant get any help due to working part time.
I am worried and stressed due to not being able to buy anything for my second child. I need help from the Discretionary welfare scheme sometime now because I do live on a tight budget. I really am in need for some help.

Margaret Carter says:

Dear sir/madam,
I need all the help I can get from the Croydon Discretionary Support scheme. I lost my job of 27 years on the 26th August 2016. I have 2 children both in full time education and living at home. Was is aged 19 in university in lLndon and my 14 year old is in year 10. I am divorced, so to pay my rent and bills is tough,. I have applied for universal credit and its £317 a month, so I need a grant too. I cant afford to pay my phone bill, EDF, tv licence, rent, food etc.