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Help with one-off or urgent expenses

Scottish Welfare Fund

The Scottish Welfare Fund helps families and people in Scotland who are on low incomes through Crisis and Community Care Grants.

You can apply for a:

  • Crisis Grant – if you’re in financial crisis, you may be able to access emergency funds for essential living costs such as food and heating.
  • Community Care Grant – to help you or someone you care for to start to live, or to carry on living, a settled life in the community.

Examples of items you may be awarded are furniture, white goods, and removal costs. To find out more or make an application, visit to find contact details of your local fund. Alternatively, you can contact your Local Authority direct, and they will complete an application over the telephone.


Food Insecurity

Foodbanks provide boxes of food donated by the public for those finding it difficult to feed themselves and their families.

If you need emergency food supplies, please contact your local council, or visit your local Citizens Advice Bureau to be referred to a foodbank in your area.


Funeral Payment

Funeral Support Payment helps pay for funeral costs for a baby, child or adult. This includes babies who were stillborn.

It usually will not cover the full cost of the funeral but it should help pay for some costs. It can be paid either to you or the funeral director who’s helping you plan the funeral.

You may qualify for help with the cost of a funeral if you:

  • Are responsible for arranging and paying for the funeral of someone close to you
  • Receive a qualifying means tested benefit such as Pension Credit and
  • Live in Scotland

For more information call Social Security Scotland on 0800 182 2222.


Short Term Benefit Advance

A Short Term Benefit Advance is an advance of a benefit you have claimed and are waiting to receive and can be paid if you are in financial need. You need to ask the Department for Work and Pensions for the advance and explain why you are in financial hardship. A Short Term Benefit Advance must be repaid, usually by regular deductions from your benefit. For more information visit:

Get an advance on your first benefit payment: Overview – GOV.UK (

Budgeting Loan

A Budgeting Loan is a loan from the Department for Work and Pension’s social fund to help with occasional expenses which are difficult to budget for. To be eligible you must have been in receipt of a qualifying benefit such as Pension Credit for at least 26 weeks. Loans are interest free and normally repaid by deductions from your benefit. Budgeting loans have been replaced by budgeting advances for people who claim Universal Credit. For more information visit:

Budgeting Loans: How they work – GOV.UK (


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