Central Government has provided councils with one-off funding (COVID Winter Grant Scheme) for the period 1 December 2020 to 31 March 2021 to support vulnerable families with children, other vulnerable households and individuals who have been particularly affected by the pandemic to ensure that they have the support they need to afford food, energy, water bills and associated costs.
As a result of this one-off funding, the Warwickshire Local Welfare Scheme has been revised for this period.
The Warwickshire Local Welfare Scheme helps our most vulnerable residents at times of unavoidable crisis when they have no other means of help.
Free school meals support
January 2021 update
During term time, under normal circumstances, schools do not provide free school meals to eligible children who are not in school. However, during the current national lockdown, schools are to continue supporting children eligible for benefits-related free school meals whilst at home. Parents/carers of eligible children therefore need to speak to their child’s school to see what support is being provided.
It is recognised within the Local Welfare Scheme that some families who are struggling financially, and are eligible for benefits tested free school meals, have difficulty covering the period when their children are off school during the school holidays. This Scheme will reach and help those most in need by supporting eligible families with the cost of food for their children over the school holiday period. The eligibility criterion for this offer is that parents are registered for free school meals (not universal FSM).
Other support available under the Scheme
The Scheme also provides support towards food, energy and water bills or other essentials. This is given either in vouchers, emergency food parcels or with credit for energy.
Who is eligible?
- You are a legal resident in the UK.
- You are aged 16 or over.
- You have no other access to funds or enough resources to pay for food, energy and water bills or other essentials.
- Your situation poses a serious health or safety risk to you or your immediate family.
- Provided Warwickshire is your normal permanent place of residence, we will disregard the criteria of needing to be a resident of Warwickshire for the last six months or three of the last five years.
- If you are from abroad and would ordinarily fail the habitual residence test for the purpose of welfare benefits, the scheme will support an application for support with food and energy top-ups.
- If you are a member of the armed forces and do not meet residency criteria, you should demonstrate a strong connection to Warwickshire.
Who is not eligible?
- Those in hospital, or a care home unless their discharge is imminent.
- People subject to immigration control by virtue of the Immigration and Asylum Act.
- Prisoners and people lawfully detained.
The Scheme also offers help to those whose needs are more long-term, who are vulnerable through an ongoing set of circumstances rather than an immediate crisis.
- care leavers
- victims of domestic violence
- former armed forces personnel
- those resettling in a community after a custodial term
This help may take the form of furnishing accommodation with basic furniture and appliances.
The local welfare scheme will also direct customers to other agencies and organisations who can offer help and support
Please call one of our helpful advisors. They will ask questions about your circumstances that you must answer honestly, and they will also signpost you to other agencies and organisations who can offer help and support.
To enquire or to apply for support, call the Local Welfare Scheme on 0800 408 1448 or 01926 359182.
- Monday to Thursday from 9:00am to 5:00pm
- Friday from 9:00am to 4.30pm
We are currently experiencing a high volume of calls so your patience would be appreciated. You will also have the opportunity to leave your details and we will call you back.