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Support for those financially struggling this Christmas

Are you finding it hard to pay for food and other essential household costs?

Christmas can be an expensive time of a year, especially if you're already struggling to make ends meet. If you need some extra help this winter, the government has provided Buckinghamshire with a Household Support Fund (HSF) to help those most in need with food and warmth support.

Buckinghamshire Council's Helping Hand team is available to help individuals or families in need, those on low incomes and those who are experiencing a financial emergency or crisis.

Whether you get in contact by phone (01296 531151) or the online form, they will ask you a few questions about your situation so they can offer the best support or advice.


Help with food

If you're struggling to afford or access food, the Helping Hand team can give support and make referrals on your behalf to a local food bank.


You can also use the Bucks Online Directory to find organisations in your area who can help you with food. Many of these organisations are providing food and meals during the school holidays.


Help with fuel and household bills

If you're struggling to top up your pre-payment meter or pay your energy costs to keep your home warm, please contact the team.


They can discuss the options available to you and help you apply for grants from third party organisations. They may also be able to help with any other essential bills.


Help with essential items for your home

Please contact the team if you need help with essential furniture. They can explore the best support for you.


In addition, some local charities, including Aylesbury Vineyard Church, High Wycombe Central Aid and Thomas Hickman Charity, can help with essential furniture if you're on a low income.


Money problems

There are many organisations ready to help you with financial advice and support, to not only help today but also with longer term solutions to help you get back on track. View Buckinghamshire Council's money problems webpage to learn about the help that is available.


Steve Bowles, Cabinet Member for Communities, said:

"If you're struggling to make ends meet this Christmas, please don't hesitate to contact our Helping Hand team, who will be able to provide you with valuable advice and support. You can contact them online or by calling 01296 531 151 during office hours. In an emergency, our out-of-hours team can be reached on 0800 999 7677.


"In addition, £30 digital food vouchers will be provided to eligible families over the Christmas school holiday period to help with the costs of food at this time of year. The food vouchers can be used at local supermarkets including Aldi, Morrisons, Sainsbury's and Tesco."

Find out more about Helping Hand here: www.buckinghamshire.gov.uk/housing-and-benefits/support-with-food-bills-and-finances

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