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Crisis support

Sunderland City Council endeavours to ensure that information contained on this page is up to date and correct and in line with the latest NHS and Government advice. The council accepts no liability for error or omission.

Financial support

The government has introduced nationwide support measures to support the vulnerable and create resilience and independence. This support should allow you to manage your circumstances better and plan your finances to meet essential needs over the coming months without reliance on crisis support and foodbanks.

Accessing this support is your best option as it will make sure you can meet your essential needs including food and fuel without leaving your home unnecessarily.

Existing benefit claimants

New benefit claimants

Changes affecting your employment including sickness, reduced hours and your rights when you return to work

Help with housing costs including your rent and mortgage

Help with Council Tax

Help with energy and water costs

Help for families including free school meals

Other help available for individuals and families

If you are looking for work

If you are experiencing a delay in accessing these support measures, you can call us on 0800 234 6084 and we may be able to help you with food/refer you to a foodbank as a short-term measure.


There are at least 15 established foodbanks in Sunderland with eight of these being linked to Sunderland Foodbank. The foodbanks and contact details are listed in the link below.

Foodbanks provide support to people referred to them who are in immediate financial crisis and who lack money to buy food.

In addition, the council operates a crisis support scheme for people who lack the financial resources for food and fuel.

This is also an option for people experiencing delays in accessing the financial support measures put in place by government.

All applications are made by phone to the council on 0191 520 5551.

Useful numbers

Job Centre Plus 0800 055 6688 Textphone: 0800 023 4888

HMRC General Tax Credit Helpline number is 0345 300 3900

If you wish to speak to someone locally about your circumstances, there are several organisations in the city you can telephone, but they are reporting high levels of demand so please bear with them when you call, the lines may be engaged.

Sunderland Welfare Rights Service are also able to advise via email.

Local providerContact details

Sunderland Welfare Rights Service

0191 520 5555


Shiney Advice and Resource Project

Washington & Coalfields areas

07477 875 783

Sunderland West Advice Project

West area

07768 985 074


Citizens Advice Sunderland

North & East areas

0300 330 1194

Dedicated debt line on 0191 415 8998

FISCUS07983 355 212   City wide
Christians Against Poverty0800 328 0006   City wide
Stop Loan Sharks helpline service0300 555 2222


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