There are lots of resources, schemes, and support available to help you cope with the costs and challenges associated with living with a terminal illness. For support with questions or concerns or for help with applications, contact our Welfare Advisor on 01293 447333.
You can apply for Council Tax Reduction (sometimes called Council Tax Support) through your local council. If you’re eligible, you’ll get a discount on your bill. To be eligible you must be on a low income or claim benefits. You can apply if you own your home, rent, are unemployed or working.
You can be ‘disregarded’ for council tax altogether if you meet the eligibility criteria, which may include having a ‘severe mental impairment’.
For more information, see How council tax works – Who has to pay.
The government is offering help for households including support with household costs, energy bills, childcare costs, transport.
For more information about what cost of living support you may be eligible for visit the Help for Households website.
West Sussex County Council will provide vouchers to buy food and essentials, and support households to pay essential bills. Applicants must apply with evidence of hardship.
Financial assistance will be available for food, fuel, water and other essentials, and will be distributed via organisations within the county that become aware of those families that are in financial crisis.
You can contact the Community Helpline on 0300 200 1008, Monday to Friday from 9am until 5pm.
If you’re a homeowner and in receipt of certain benefits, you might be able to get help towards interest payments on mortgage or loans you’ve taken out for certain repairs and improvements to your home.
Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI) pays some of the mortgage interest directly to the lender, but it is a loan, which will eventually need to paid back. If you’re struggling to meet your mortgage payments, talk to your lender as soon as possible, even if you’ve not missed a payment yet.
The National Key Scheme (NKS) offers people with a disability, including cancer, access to public disabled toilets across the UK. You can buy a RADAR (Royal Association for Disability and Rehabilitation) Key from Disability Rights UK or call 0203 687 0790.
Urgent Support with Food and Fuel
Support for those in need of urgent help or assistance.
West Sussex Community Hub may be able to support those in urgent need of help with fuel or food costs via the Household Support Fund.
With pressure on household incomes some families may have less money available to spend on food or may be in crisis and have no money left for essentials. Whatever your situation, there are a number of local options. Visit the government website to find out more.
West Sussex County Council offers practical support and advice to anyone who needs it around the cost of living.
Surrey Crisis Fund provides financial help to Surrey residents who have nowhere else to turn in an emergency or following a disaster. It also can provide assistance to set up a home in the community where no other funds or resources are available.
Warm Hubs in Surrey are places where you can drop in, get warm, and meet others. There is also free energy advice available too.
Warm Welcome consists of over 3000 registered organisations that have opened, or are opening up, free, warm, welcoming spaces for the public across the UK this winter.
The Easter Team provides food parcels and occasional gas and electric top-ups. You can call the food parcel request line on 07940 900948. This phone line is monitored part-time. If you cannot get through, leave a message with your contact details as all unanswered calls will be returned.
Crawley Free Shop is a charity supermarket providing free food, toiletries, and baby essentials. They have a simple online self-referral form, email email@example.com or call 07861907133
Horsham District Foodbank (Horsham Matters) provide 3-5 days’ worth of emergency food for those in crisis. You can contact the team directly for a food bank voucher by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 0300 124 0204. Referrals from local agencies are also accepted.
Visit Surrey Information Point for information on food banks in the area. You can also try:
For Foodbank at St Matthews Redhill a referral voucher from a local support agency is required. You can telephone 07849253085 for more information.
For Caterham/Oxted Foodbank a referral from a support agency is required. You can email email@example.com for more information.
Caterham Baptist Church: Open Thursdays 12:00pm-2:00pm, call 07523 983122
Oakhall Church: Open Mondays 12:00pm-2:00pm, call 07523 983122
King’s Church, Oxted: Open Wednesdays 12:00pm-2:00pm, call 07423402453
Online support, tips, and suggestions on ways to reduce costs and save money on energy bills, food and shopping, fuel and insurances.
Find the website of your local council to check what support may be available. There are also some grants and schemes run separately by some local authorities.
MoneySavingExpert Household Bills provides guides and tools to help you get the best deals on your household bills.
Money Helper – How to save money on household bills offers tips on reducing your utility bills.
Reducing your regular living costs – Citizens Advice UK gives advice on whether you are eligible for discounts, provides support with your energy bills, and offers tips for making your home more energy efficient.
Household Energy Advice includes information on energy support, grants, energy performance certificates (EPCs), energy saving, and renewable energy for your home
Advice on Debt and Loans
If you have financial worries relating to outstanding debts or loans it’s worth contacting money support services for advice.
Get advice on the rising cost of living or find debt solutions on the StepChange website.
National Debtline provides free help and advice on dealing with debt. You can also call 0808 808 4000.
Get debt and money advice online at Citizens Advice in West Sussex or call 0808 278 7969.
Christians Against Poverty provides a range of free services across the UK through local churches.
MoneyHelper offers free impartial help on money and pension choices.
Some of these you will be able to apply for yourself, some of them we will need to help you. These payments are ones you won’t have to give back and can support with things like equipment, transport costs, rising cost of living, and utility bills.
Charis run several grants for energy providers and have an income calculator on their website. Visit Charis Grant Schemes for Individuals or call 01733 421 021.
Some energy suppliers offer grants to their customers. Check with your supplier directly or use a grants checker like Turn2Us.
Local Energy Advice Partnership (LEAP) is a free service helping people to keep warm and reduce their energy bills without costing them any money. It is available to anyone already in, or at risk of falling in to fuel poverty and is open to homeowners, private renters or social housing tenants.
Find out more on LEAP’s website or call 0800 060 7567.
Support with Water Bills
Schemes and discounts available from your water supplier for those with certain medical conditions or in receipt of benefits.
Water Sure is a scheme that helps some people with their water bills. To apply for the scheme, you must be in receipt of certain benefits and need to use a lot of water either for medical reasons or because your household has a certain number of school-age children. You will also need to be on a water meter or be waiting to have one installed.
Read Citizens Advice on the Water Sure Scheme for more information.
You can apply for financial support if you can demonstrate that more than 5% of your income is spent on water costs.
Read Southern Water – What if I can’t pay my bill? or call their affordability team on 0800 027 0363
Thames Water have a help scheme for those with a water dependent medical condition to help manage costs of water bills . Visit Thames Water Help and Water Sure Schemes to find out more.
SES Water have schemes to support customers on low income and/or medical conditions. Visit Water Support Scheme – SES Water for more information.
Priority Service Register
Patients can register for additional support in case of power cuts or disruption to energy supplies.
Visit UK Power Networks Priority Services Register (PSR) to ensure that you will receive extra support if you experience a power cut.
Get help from EDF Energy Priority Services if you need support with stress, illness, bereavement, disability or debt.
Learn more about how to access additional support from your energy supplier by visiting Citizen Advice on Energy Supply.