Looking for the social fund contact number? Call the telephone number above to get directly through to the correct department. The Social Fund was a form of a welfare benefit that could be used for one off or occasional payments, along with other routine payments such as Jobseekers Allowance. The discretionary social fund was abolished in 2012, with it taking effect from April 2013.
What Help Can The Social Fund Give Me?
If you find yourself needing to use the social fund contact number, there are many questions you might want answering. Some of these could be:
- What is the Social Fund?
- What can the Social Fund be used for?
- Does the Social Fund have to be repaid?
- What are the conditions for being eligible for the Social Fund?
- What has happened to the Social Fund?
Social Fund Telephone Line Opening Hours
The Social Fund Contact Phone Number is available from 08:00 – 18:00 Monday to Friday. It is unstaffed over the weekends.
Commonly Asked Questions
When you speak to a member of staff on the Social Fund Contact Number, you may be asking a similar question to someone else. We have collected a short list of these questions and have provided some potential answers as well:
Why Was The Discretionary Social Fund Abolished?
The discretionary social fund was abolished in April 2013 following the Welfare Reform Act of 2012. The Act gave great power to local authorities to control the spending of the Social Fund.
If you have any further questions, you should ring the Social Fund Contact Number.
What Is Available That Offers A Similar Service To The Social Fund?
The Regulated Social Fund still exists, offering:
- Funeral Expenses Payments
- Sure Start Maternity Grant
- Cold Weather Payment
- Winter Fuel Payment
The Discretionary Social Fund no longer exists, meaning there are no Community Care Grants or Crisis Loans available. However, there are still Budgeting Loans on offer for those who have been on a qualifying benefit for a minimum of 26 weeks.
Are There Any Loans Or Grants Still Available From The Social Fund?
Although the Discretionary Social Fund no longer exists, there is still the Regulated Social Fund, which offers:
- Funeral Expenses Payments
- Sure Start Maternity Grants
- Cold Weather Payments
- Winter Fuel Payments
Budget Loans are still available for those who have been on a qualifying benefit for at least 26 weeks.
If you have any other questions, you should use the Social Fund Contact Number to find out more information.
About The Social Fund
The Social Fund was fully introduced in 1988 and offered for one off or occasional payments alongside another form of regular payments, for example, Jobseekers Allowance or Income Support. There were two categories to the Social Fund:
- The Discretionary Social Fund
- This was intended for exceptional and irregular needs and included community car grants, budgeting loans and crisis loans
- The Regulated Social Fund
- This covered maternity, funeral, winter fuel and heating expenses
Following the Welfare Reform Act of 2012 the Social Fund was abolished, with effect from April 2013.
3000 Families Seek Crisis for Food and Fridges from Council
Stoke on Trent has seen 3000 of its residents seeking help for food and essentials from Stoke City Council’s social fund. The money was needed to heat homes, buy kitchen appliances or even feed themselves. It seems that more than 50 people a day are seeking help from the Council’s ‘crisis’ fund, and officers are now expressing concern that residents are using the social fund as an ongoing benefit, rather than something to turn to as a last resort in a crisis. Last year, the Authorities paid over £33, 000 to successful applicants of the scheme, raising concerns. For 2016/17 the funds have dropped from £350, 000 to £250, 000 due to lack of Government funding, but despite the cut to costs, workers say that they are still receiving over 50 calls per day, some people without food or electricity. the Social Fund also provided people with fuel vouchers and kitchen appliances as part of the scheme.
Strategic housing manager Gary Hall explains that the council is aiming to reduce the number of funds provided by the scheme; ‘when people present to us, we have to ask them whether they are actually in crisis, or whether they are just struggling to manage with the money that they’ve got.’ No cash is handed out under the scheme, but in previous times, around £105, 500 was spent on 296 cookers and 217 fridges and freezers and a further £66, 400 on fuel and food handouts. The social funding scheme was previously managed nationally by the DWP, but was taken over locally in 2013. The amount of funding provided has increased greatly, in 2015 Stoke City Council paid out more than £300,000 which is a giant leap from the £41,700 that was needed in 2014. Benefits manager Dan Marsen has said that it is ‘difficult to say’ whether the system is being abused by residents.
£2million From The Social Fund To Be Used To Help Unemployed in Dundee
The funding will be used to support the long-term unemployed. And will also be used to create new skills, improve confidence, and help personal challenges like childcare, debt and health difficulties. The approval of the money, announced by Dundee City Council, will be used to fund organisations which will work with the Dundee Employability Pipeline to offer interview experience and qualifications to those who don’t have job experience, as well as those who have never had a job.