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Don't deal with it alone - find help when you need it

Issued: 9 Dec 2021

a man and a woman looking through paperwork with worried expressions.

South Hams District Council has launched a new online support directory to signpost local people to get help this winter. 

The directory provides essential information and contact details for a wide range of support available across the district from the Council and other groups. This includes:

  • details on how to apply for the Household Support Fund to get help with paying essential bills
  • where to go for help if you have mobility needs, including applying for a blue badge or Personal Independence Payments
  • support to pay for energy costs as well as help to improve the energy efficiency of your home to reduce fuel bills
  • a list of places to go for financial and practical support for young people and families
  • contacts for a wide range of other support available locally, including foodbanks, help for people feeling isolated, mental health support and where to go for money and debt advice. 

Cllr Jonathan Hawkins, South Hams District Council Executive Member for Leisure Health and Wellbeing said: "We know that Christmas can be a very challenging time for many local residents, so I'm delighted we've been able to launch this new directory now. We hope that by putting together the list of what help is available and where, we can make sure that people in the South Hams get the support they need.

"Our team are working hard to quickly get Household Support Fund money to the people who need it. But it's worth remembering that the ways we can help don't stop there. This includes things like making adaptations to your home to help you to live independently, support for people threatened with homelessness or struggling to pay their rent and help to reduce energy costs. By working closely with a number of other agencies that provide more specific support we're also here to help signpost residents to access all the help available across the South Hams."  

Enhancing community wellbeing is a core theme of the Council's long-term strategy to support local residents. By supporting voluntary sector and other partners and actively reducing health inequalities and rural poverty, the Council will make a positive impact on community wellbeing. The directory will be regularly updated to ensure local people can access support when needed.

The new Household Support Fund is designed to provide rapid short-term financial support for people who don't have enough money to buy essentials like food or pay for heating. Anyone over 16 years old in the South Hams could be eligible, but you will need to confirm that your need is genuine. These grants aim to help people to meet daily needs such as food, clothing and utility bills. Payments will be made directly into your bank account. Residents without a bank account should contact us.

To apply for the Household Support Fund or to see what other help is available for local people, please go to www.southhams.gov.uk/support-directory

You can also call 01803 861234  or speak to your local District councillor.

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