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Crisis support

Crisis Support is one of two evidence-based schemes that make up Sunderland City Council's Local Welfare Provision Scheme. The scheme is intended to help vulnerable people who do not have short-term financial resources to be able to meet certain needs themselves following an emergency or crisis. 

The scheme can support people with a crisis or emergency by providing help with: 

  • food - where a foodbank is unable to help 
  • utilities (gas/electricity) - for people with prepayment meters only  
  • clothing - can cover basic clothing needs where the applicant does not have or has been deprived of suitable clothing following a crisis or emergency , or where they are being discharged from a long term stay in hospital , prison,  or similar institution

Eligibility criteria  

The individual's application must meet the Local Welfare Provision Policy - April 2024 requirements , meet at least one of a number of eligibility criteria,  which includes lacking financial resources ( income or savings).

How to apply

Applications for help with food , fuel  or clothing should be made via telephone to our Home and Money Team on 0191 520 5551.

For help with clothing support, applications should be made using the online clothing support application. You will need to provide any evidence requested, if you need help with this or have any questions you can telephone our Home and Money Team on 0191 520 5551.

Find out where you can get other help and support at

If you are waiting for a new DWP benefit award and/or are in financial difficulty, visit  


If your application is successful, awards are normally made via supermarket food vouchers or clothing vouchers , and via PayPoint top ups for prepayment meters

If your application is unsuccessful and you think the decision is wrong, you can request that the council review this decision by telephone within 3 working days of the  decision notification date by contacting our Home and Money Team on 0191 520 5551

LWP is  not a social security benefit therefore If the Internal Review does not change the decision , and you are still unhappy you cannot appeal to HM Courts & Tribunals Service . You may be able to complain via the councils Corporate Complaints Policy or if that fails and in cases of alleged maladministration to the  Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman

For further information on how the Council uses your personal information, please refer to our Privacy Notice on the Council Website



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