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Help in Emergencies for Local People (HELP)

Apply for HELP

You can apply to the HELP scheme if you meet all the following criteria:

  • are a resident in the Cheshire West and Chester area
  • are leaving care or experiencing an emergency that you need help with
  • agree to accept any support offered
  • are in receipt of housing or Council Tax related financial support, for example Housing Benefit, Universal Credit housing element or Council Tax Reduction (In exceptional circumstances you may qualify if you are in the process of claiming any of these benefits, are likely to be successful and are in crisis)
  • are classed as vulnerable.

For the purposes of this scheme, we define 'vulnerable' as a person who is:

  • physically and/or mentally impaired and in receipt of the severe or enhanced disability premiums
  • in receipt of the middle or high rate of Disability Living Allowance (either Care or Mobility component) or the enhanced rate of Personal Independence Payments (either Daily Living or Mobility component)
  • has a mental impairment exemption for Council Tax
  • the qualifying age for State Pension Credit
  • terminally ill
  • individuals who have a dependent child living with them on a permanent basis, and the carer of that child qualifies for child benefit
  • young people aged 16 to 18
  • people who are leaving care or any other type of supported provision.

In addition, prisoners on discharge from prison will also be entitled to help in setting up home, provided they meet the other criteria and accept the support offered.

We may also decided that an applicant is classed as vulnerable due to their individual circumstances, but will only do so in rare and exceptional cases.


You may also call us on 0808 175 3599 to request a paper form be sent to you. Our phone line opening hours are Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.

If you have any issues with applying online, please email or call the above number.

We are not able to offer HELP applications from our offices as our customer service staff aren't trained in the scheme. When you make a claim you will need to let us have a telephone number so we can speak to you urgently to discuss your application.