National as well as local charities and government agencies in the UK listed below provide grants to eligible families, single mothers or individuals to help them pay bills or other costs. There may be emergency funds for equipment, transportation or housing, including grants to clear utility bill or rent arrears. The criteria for each grant will be different, and funds issued will be specific to each applicant and their background. There may be money to pay for educational expenses, fuel or electricity bills, medical needs, housing payments, and other costs that applicants may have. The aim of the government or a charity is to provide financial assistance that will improve the family’s economic situation.
Many people do not know these grants exist, the types of bills they may pay for, or how to apply for them. Families in the United Kingdom facing poverty or that are going through a financial crisis could often get assistance from one of these charities or maybe even a district council, if they just knew where to apply at and if they knew how to meet the application criteria that are in place. Also, people that now are living independently but are just looking to improve their skills or income could also benefit from these grants.
Depending on the charity or the terms of any funds from the government, some organisations will provide funding only to certain individuals. There are agencies that assist people of a certain profession, such as a teacher or nurse, or there are also programmes that may only help a student with their educational costs.
Each charity is different, however. The grants from the government will tend to be for people that are facing poverty, homelessness, or that are on some form of welfare or benefits. One main use of the funds is for paying rental costs for tenants that are in arrears, and another priority is on paying winter heating bills for families that are in fuel poverty. There may even be grants in the UK for clearing arrears on bills or rent or mortgages.
While these eligibility criteria can limit the number of individuals that can receive help, the benefit is that if an applicant falls into the category of who the grant is intended for, they are more likely to be found to be qualified and receive assistance for their needs.
When applying for any type of grant, be prepared to provide the agency or trustees with proof of your personal situation as they will need to make sure the application wasn’t falsified. A trustee or a specialist will review the application and accept or refuse it as soon as possible, and this will depend on staffing, resources, funding, and other criteria.
Grants from the government and local councils
When contacting a local council or government agency, funds from those organisations will tend to be for families on a low income that are faced with a one-off financial crisis, such as job loss. These government groups often have the aim of preventing homelessness, so there may be grants to pay rent or maybe electricity bills that are in arrears. Or there can be funds for the deposit on a new home for a homeless individual that has shown they can live independently. In some districts, the council will also provide the applicant with either a prepaid card or voucher for items such as food, and this card is another form of a grant that may be provide. Find a listing of free vouchers.
Individuals that seek help from a government organisation for their bills should note these grants tend to be more limited as they often rely on funding from the central government. Not only that, but the aim is usually to help families or individuals that are facing poverty or homelessness, so the funds are for people with a very low income and is for those that are not able to find help for paying their bills for any other charities or programmes.
Many of these funds are part of welfare schemes that are available from counties and local authorities. The name provided to this source of emergency assistance will vary, and each council will also have their own application process in order to receive a grant. The aim is to help families or individuals that are on a low income, but are faced with an exceptional hardship and have no other source of funds available to them. If a person is found eligible, a combination of vouchers, pre-paid cards, and other sources of funding provided from the council can help them pay bills and a number of household expenses. Learn more on local welfare schemes.
Grants can help pay for burial and cremation costs. Families that have lost a loved one, and that are on benefits, can get assistance from the government. The grants provided will only pay for a small portion of the funeral bill, and in some cases the funds will need to be repaid. However this form of assistance can still be very helpful to the low income. Find how the funeral payment scheme works.
Charitable funds and grants
There are hundreds of charities across the nation that may also provide funds for various bills and also people of different backgrounds. These organisations will usually depend on funding and contributions from businesses, not-for-profits, and individuals across the nation.
The charitable organisations will tend to differ from the government funds as they are for people of different backgrounds, incomes, professions, and experiences. They are not just for those individuals on a low income or that may be on welfare, however they will tend to prioritise those families that are in financial need. As an example, there may be grants to help pay for educational needs, rent for a student, assistance for people facing cancer, policemen, teachers and many others.
Charities that provide financial assistance from grants
The organisations below will issue grants for individuals that meet their eligibility criteria. Funds can be provided for a wide variety of bills or needs, and the terms of each programme are different.
Four different types of grants are available from Buttle UK. The aim is to help young people as well as children with a variety of needs. Examples of the schemes include assistance for basic needs, such as clothing, furniture, or household goods. Another option, the Anchor Project, provides support for domestic violence survivors. The organisation also offers other programmes, and find more information on grants and assistance from Buttle UK.
Church of England provides assistance to people that currently work for their church, or that have retired from it, so it includes pensioners. Most of the programmes address housing needs, whether that is grant for rental expenses or supportive accommodations for the elderly. The Housing Assistance for the Retired Ministry, or CHARM scheme, is the main resource for support. More on Church of England housing assistance.
Elizabeth Finn Care assists professionals with the payment of their living expenses when they are moving. The charity has millions of pounds to issue each year, and the money can be used to pay for resettlement costs, including rent in advance or the deposit on a new home. Other uses of the relocation grants from Elizabeth Finn can be for utility bills and expenses that a professional may have when moving to a new area.
Family Action offers grants that can help pay Educational or Employment costs. The money is used to pay for bills so the family can gain stability. People that are clients of the non-profit, and enrolled into the educational scheme, can also get a grant to pay for living costs such as food, car repairs, and clothing while they work towards stability. Find how to get financial help from Family Action.
Residents of North East England can get grants and low cost loans through the Five Lamps charity. This organisation helps people cover living costs as well as to recover from payday lending problems. Five Lamps grant and loan programmes can provide emergency funding even when other agencies and banks deny applications.
People over the age of 60 can receive one time grants or an allowance that is provided twice a year from Friends of the Elderly. The charity organisation provides assistance for obtaining essential household items, and there may also be financial help for bills including heating from the Winter Comforts Fund. Read more Friends of the Elderly grants.
Percy Bilton Charity focuses on both senior citizens and the disabled across the UK. Based on funding and donations, a cash grant of £200 can be provided for bills or household items or clearing arrears on rent in the private sector. It can provide clothing, appliances for heating, wheelchairs and more. The aim of the charity is strictly on individuals with a disability that are struggling or the financial aid is for older people. Find how to apply for grants from Percy Bilton.
Members of the Royal Air Force and their children and partners, both serving and veterans, can receive financial assistance and support from the RAF Benevolent Fund. Grants provided by the charity can be used to pay bills when the client is faced with a hardship, and there is also help provided for other needs, such as someone from the RAF that is disabled, ill, or that is facing a crisis. One time financial aid and weekly grants are available from the Royal Air Force Benevolent charitable fund.
Royal British Legion provides funds to people that are still serving as well as veterans and their families. There are grants provided for many expenses, ranging from housing or rental payment arrears to the payment of fuel bills. The charity also partners with the service member on gaining financial independence, so funds may also be issued for paying educational or business expenses. Find more information on Royal British Legion grants.
Several charities provide aid to the Scottish Armed Forces Community. These organisations offer housing assistance, help with employment and other forms of support to current and ex-Servicemen and Women as well as their direct families.
R S Hayward Trust provides grants to individuals that worked at one time in Galashiels in the UK, but who are no longer employed. The applicant may be retired, disabled, or not working for some other reason, but the charity may still be able to help. Small dollar amounts are provided from the R S Hayward Trust grant for any type of bill or living expense.
Parents with children can get free items, vouchers or grants from a national charity. The Save the Children scheme is aimed at helping families provide for their home or flat. The assistance will allow the client to focus on paying their bills as they will not need to worry about using income to buy household supplies. Read more on applying for free goods from Save the Children.
Grants to pay for housing costs are provided by Talisman Charitable Trust. The funds from the charity can be used for different types of bills that need to be paid by families on a low income as well as people with a disability, including rent. Find more information on housing grants from Talisman Charitable Trust.
Anyone that works in an educational field may apply for grants from the Teacher Support Network. The organisation operates nationally, and provides financial help and counselling to teachers, individuals that are employed in further or higher education, and their families or dependents. Funds can be used for fuel costs, council tax, rent arrears, and clothing. There are several other types of bills that can be paid by the grants from the Teacher Support Network.
The Trades House of Glasgow provides grants to families with children under the age of 18 and there is also financial aid for people taking care of a child that is not theirs, such as as grandparent raising a relative. Cash may be used to pay for household expenses such as food, appliances, or clothing, among other items. Learn how to get grants from the Trades House of Glasgow.