Coronavirus (COVID-19): latest information about Council Tax and benefits.
The Discretionary Crisis Fund (DCF) is a fund of last resort to help people who find themselves in a crisis.
If you're eligible for support, the kind of support you'll receive will depend on your circumstances.
If you receive help, it will be in the form of goods. You will not receive a cash payment.
How to apply
You can use any of the following methods to apply for an award from the Discretionary Crisis Fund.
Ring us on 01706 532222, Monday to Friday, 9am-5.30pm.
You can use a phone for FREE at a number of libraries in the borough.
View facilities at your local library.
Apply online- we're aware there are a number of issues with the form provided by North Gate Public Services.
To complete the online form:
- You'll need to use a laptop or computer as the form doesn't work on mobile devices.
- You'll need to enable pop ups on the laptop or computer you're using.
View instructions to enable pop ups (414kb pdf)
- You can use a computer, or connect to WiFi, for FREE at any library in the borough.
Library services - find your local library or see how to book a library computer.
Information you'll need to supply with your application
You'll need information about what benefits you claim, your National Insurance Number, your Council Tax Reference Number and, if you're applying for help with emergency household energy, you'll need to provide an email address.
- If you're applying for essential household items to help you resettle into your new accommodation after leaving prison, care or temporary homeless accommodation, the agency you're working with must make the application on your behalf.
- If you're resettling whilst being supported by the Bond Board, or if you're leaving National Asylum Support Service accommodation and need help with furniture, the Bond Board or the agency you're working with must make the application on your behalf.
- If you're making a claim because of a medical or disability need, you'll need a letter from your doctor or hospital.
- If you're applying for a Security Allowance to secure your home after a break-in, you'll need a crime reference number. You'll need a crime reference number if you've been a victim of crime within your own home and are applying for help to secure your accommodation.
- If you're fleeing domestic abuse in a crisis situation and need support, you'll need a crime reference number - or, if you're working with an agency due to the abuse, they could verify your application for you.
Who can apply?
You need to be over 16 years old to apply and living in the borough or have accepted a firm offer of accommodation in the borough. You will also need to be claiming a benefit. If you’re in work and claiming a benefit, for example Housing Benefit or Working Tax Credits, you can still apply to the fund.
What help is available?
The fund is limited, so we can only help people in a crisis who do not have the means to help themselves; for example the Discretionary Crisis Fund supports people who:
- Are leaving care, temporary accommodation or prison and need help to resettle in to the community
- Are in crisis after fleeing domestic abuse
- Do not have the means to heat their home
- Need to make an emergency journey such as attend a hospital appointment
What happens if you're unsuccessful
If you don't meet the criteria to be supported by the Discretionary Crisis Fund, we'll advise you of:
Unhappy with the decision?
If you're not happy with the decision made on your application you can ask us to review it. You must request this review in writing within 5 working days of you being notified of the initial decision by:
Post: NESU, PO Box 1007, Billingham TS19 1UN