The Local Discretionary Social Fund can provide help with:

  • buying food and groceries
  • paying for gas and electricity if you pay for it by key card or meter
  • essential items you need to live in your home such as beds, cookers or fridges
  • other support you may need in an emergency  

The fund doesn't provide cash, we'll give you vouchers instead, or find another way to help you access emergency food.

Applying for help

To get emergency help or essential items you must:

  • live in Brighton & Hove
  • be eligible for benefits or tax credits or Council Tax reduction
  • fit one of the circumstances below:
  1. you are leaving a place of care, prison or temporary supported housing and need help establishing a home
  2. without the items you apply for, you would not be able to remain living independently without the need of formal care
  3. you have a need that has come as a result of an emergency or disaster and you or a family member will be at risk if this need is not met
  4. you need help to pay for essentials you can't live without this winter

We'll review your application once we've received all of your information.

This will be within one day for emergency help and five days for essential items.

We'll find the best way to help you, which may include referring you to an agency for budgeting or debt advice.  

Contact us

For more information or to ask a question about your application, you can contact our Discretionary Help and Advice team by:

Get support while isolating

If you have been told to isolate by the NHS Test and Trace team and you can't work from home, you may be entitled to a Self-Isolation payment. Go to our Self-Isolation support page to see if you can apply.

For an update on your application for the Self-Isolation Payment, please call 01273 292000.

Covid-19 help

For more information you can send an email to