Central Bedfordshire Council news and press releases

Council has supported 9,000 vulnerable households this winter

Thursday, 10 March 2022

Over the winter months, 9,000 vulnerable households received support from Central Bedfordshire Council.

We were allocated £1.4m of Government funding to support vulnerable households over the winter period. Funding was allocated from the Household Support Fund by the Department for Work and Pensions, replacing the Covid Local Support Grant.

The fund is to support residents with food, energy and water bills and other essentials over the winter period.

Between October and December, 9,000 households received support. This includes over 12,000 supermarket vouchers distributed to households with children and young people eligible for free school meals, 2-year-old funding and early years pupil premium during the October half term and Christmas holidays to support with food costs.

There is still funding available. As well as children entitled to free school meals, those eligible for support include:

  • residents of Council-managed caravan sites or permanent, legally licensed residential park homes
  • Local Council Tax Support (LCTS) claimants

This is the full list of who is eligible for support.

We have also allocated funding to a number of partner agencies that support vulnerable households. Over £160,000 was allocated to third party organisations to support those who need food, water and other essentials. The organisations include Age UK, NEED Foodbank, PREEN Foodbank, Dunstable Foodbank, Bedfordshire Rural Communities Charity - Good Neighbour Scheme, Citizens Advice and Advice Central/Disability Resource Centre.

Councillor Sue Clark, Deputy Leader of Central Bedfordshire Council, said:

The Household Support Fund has been designed to support those most in need over the winter as families continued to struggle during the pandemic. We have supported 9,000 households so far and allocated some funding to a number of organisations so they can distribute food and offer wider essential support to eligible households. If you have not already received support from the fund, I would urge households to double check the criteria on our website and get in touch with us if they do meet the criteria listed to see if they can receive support.