Emergency financial support
We have included a number of resources to help you if you are in urgent need of support, including foodbank information, welfare support schemes and state benefit information.
Talk to the CF team
If money and finance is affecting yours or your child’s health, wellbeing or ability to cope, please discuss this with a member of the CF team. Many teams have specialist social workers who know who to contact for a financial emergency. The CF team will always want to know if things have become particularly difficult.
Most foodbanks need a referral from a charity or a professional. You can check online to see if there are any independent foodbanks that you can go to without a referral, or ask the CF team if they can refer you. You can also contact your local council to see what foodbanks are in your area and if they can refer you. We understand that the nutritious quality of food offered at foodbanks may not be appropriate for people with CF but it may help family members. You can also contact us to find out about our emergency grants.
Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales all have nationwide welfare schemes. In England, the schemes are at a local authority level.
In England, Local Welfare Assistance Schemes (LWAS) offer people on low incomes emergency support, providing vouchers or a pre-paid card to pay for food, fuel or clothing. You can also get basic living items, such as beds, cookers or fridges. The scheme is discretionary, and so you will need to check what support is offered locally.
In Wales, the Discretionary Assistance Fund (DAF) provides grants to help with essential costs after an emergency or help you or someone you care for live independently.
In Northern Ireland, the Finance Support Service supports people in need of short-term financial assistance through the Discretionary Support scheme.
We understand it can be complicated to navigate the benefits system, especially during a period where the system is undergoing widespread change. We can offer you support through the process with information on our website and advice from our dedicated Welfare team. We also have a number of welfare grants available to help people with CF and their families through challenging times.
- You can ask for an advance payment of Universal Credit to help you get by while you are waiting for your first payment. You can also ask for an advance payment if your circumstances have changed and you expect your Universal Credit payments to increase. The advance payment is a loan - you’ll have to pay it back, but you won’t need to pay any interest.
- You can apply for budgeting advance payments if you are claiming Universal Credit for more than six months and need help with essential items. This is a loan – you'll get reduced Universal Credit payments until you've paid off the amount you borrow. This will normally be over 12 months.
- Budgeting Loans are interest free loans that you can apply for to help with essential items if you are claiming Income Support, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, income-related Employment and Support Allowance or Pension Credit. This is a loan – you'll get reduced benefit payments until you've paid off the amount you borrow. This will normally be over 24 months.
- You may receive a Cold Weather Payment if you’re getting a means-tested benefit. This is a £25 payment, paid automatically into your bank for every seven-day period of cold weather between November and March.
We provide emergency grants of up to £150 for adults and children with CF in immediate financial difficulty, ensuring they can afford the goods and services they need to stay well.
Other financial support
We support people with cystic fibrosis and their families every step of the way, from welfare grants, support applying for benefits and information and advice for times in financial need.
Our confidential Helpline offers a listening ear, as well as information and support on any aspect of cystic fibrosis, including financial support such as benefits and our welfare grants.