The Household Support Fund (HSF) is a Central Government fund to help people in need pay for food and fuel.

Due to unprecedented demand this fund is now closed.

Forum Central is administering grants for organisations to distribute to the people they support, particularly those in Communities of Interest including; organisations working with culturally diverse groups, people with mental ill health (including Young People), people with learning disabilities, physical or sensory impairments and older people.

Funding is distributed through grants of up to £5,000 and is targeted at Households in Leeds.

Last year we were able to provide funding to 99 organisations across Leeds who directly supported those in need, providing food and fuel vouchers and essential items. To read more about the work of the projects involved in last year’s distribution of the grants Household Support Fund Forum Central Impact Report This direct support to those in need made a huge difference:

“”It’s very helpful for me to have some extra funds for food as I’m struggling currently with cost being so high. It’ll help me eat better as well.”

How to apply

The Grants round is now open. We are looking to allocate all funding by mid July 2024 and we will close the window for applications early if and when all funds have been allocated so please get your applications in as soon as possible. All funding must be spent by the 30th September and the Forum Central team are working hard to ensure this is met. The grants panel will meet regularly in July.

Any questions please contact Hillary on 07584 113756 or email [email protected].

Additional information about the grant

The Household Support Fund (HSF) is a Central Government fund. The monitoring deadline is specified by the DWP (Department for Work and Pensions) and Forum Central is unable to change this.

Which individuals are eligible for support?

Government guidance states “The Fund should be used to support households in the most need; particularly those who may not be eligible for the other support”.

It is to be aimed at a wide range of low income households in need “including families with children of all ages, pensioners, unpaid carers, care leavers and disabled people”.

The guidance also states that this funding can be used to provide ‘a basic safety net to individuals regardless of their immigration status’, so those with no recourse to public funds are officially able to access funding.

The funds administered by Forum Central aims to provide much needed support to individuals through community groups.

Application process

There is a short form to complete to apply for funds. Third sector organisations in Leeds can apply for funding. We encourage applications from smaller and grassroots organisations including faith organisations.

We are unable to provide funding directly to individuals.

For us to award funding we must receive a completed application, we are aware of the need for this support to be distributed quickly so have kept the application process to a minimum.

Application forms should be completed online – if you need support to do this, please contact us. rather complete a word document and emailed to

If you are awarded funding, we will send you a grant agreement form which must be signed and returned back to us in order for us to release funds. Funds cannot be paid into an individual’s bank account so must be the organisation’s account or an account of an organisation willing to act as guarantor.

All applicants will be informed of the outcome of their application. If you are not awarded funding at that panel, you will be contacted and are able to reapply at the subsequent panel.

Who else is delivering the fund in my area?

Organisations funded through the Leeds Food Aid Network and Leeds Community anchor network have also been provided funding through the Household Support Fund. To ensure the funding reaches those in need, we will work with other funders to avoid duplication and priority given to organisations who are not in receipt of HSF funding. If an organisation applies and is in receipt of HSF funding through another funder, we will ask you to clarify how your application is different to ensure we avoid double funding.

We will share a list of all successful organisations with Leeds City Council, the Local Care Partnerships team. We will consider delivery by ward or area order, though we are aware some organisations will cover more than one ward. There will undoubtedly be a crossover between communities of interest and communities of place but we aim to ensure that delivery on a local level will complement provision city-wide.

What can it be spent on?

The funding can be used to provide fuel costs, food or food vouchers.

Because additional funding has been allocated to the Food Aid Network and the Community Anchor Network, Forum Central will prioritise funding which supports people with issues of fuel poverty.

The grant can also be spent on other wider essentials and essential items including energy saving goods, housing costs and travel in exceptional circumstances.

How much can we claim for our overheads?

The official guidance states that ‘reasonable cost’ should be taken for overheads, LCC request that organisational overheads should not be over 15%.

What are the monitoring requirements?

You will be expected to return the monitoring before the 4th October 2024.

A monitoring template will be provided alongside the grant agreement form , which will include the following:

  • Overall spend
  • Categories of types of support
    • (Food, fuel, wider essentials etc.)
  • Household composition of beneficiaries
    • (Household with children/with pensioners/ disable people/other)

This is trust-based funding, awarded on the basis you are best placed to meet the needs of the communities you work with. No further proof of spend will be requested, but you are expected to maintain a record as would be required via your own internal processes.

The Household Support Fund (HSF) is a Central Government fund. The monitoring deadline is specified by the DWP and Forum Central is unable to change this.

Contact

If you have any questions please get in touch.

Hillary Wadsworth on 07584 113756 or email [email protected].