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09 June 2022

County Council approves £2m Cost of Living fund to help those most in need

Cumbria County Council’s cabinet has approved £2m worth of additional funding in response to the cost-of-living crisis to support individuals and families experiencing financial difficultly.

The new Cost of Living Reserve fund will be used to support four different initiatives:

  • £0.5m will be used to boost the council’s Ways to Welfare budget which is used to issue grants and other support to people in need. If you’re in need of urgent financial support, call the county council's Support Helpline on 0800 783 1966 (Monday to Friday 9am to 3pm).
  • £0.5m will be used to increase school clothing grants from £25 to £50 for primary school children, and from £35 to £100 for secondary school children this year. Any parents who are eligible for free school meals because of their financial situation are automatically eligible for the school clothing grants. To find out more about eligibility and how to apply, visit the county council website.
  • £0.5m will also be used to extend free school meal provision to eligible children during the summer holidays.
  • £0.5m will be used for Direct Community Support - to further support people in urgent need. This will partly be achieved by bulk purchasing food to fill a shortfall in food bank donations, as the cost-of-living crisis hits more and more people who would have been able previously to buy extras during their weekly shop to support food banks. 

Councillor Stewart Young, Leader of Cumbria County Council, said: “The cost-of-living crisis is having a real impact on so many families and we are committed to helping those who are really struggling right now. That’s why we’ve allocated as much money as we can, to be available immediately, to support those who need it most, despite cuts to our budget.

“If you’re struggling to pay your bills, buy food or are in urgent financial need - I urge you to take advantage of the additional funding we’re providing as part of the Cost-of-Living Reserve fund.

“You can do this by speaking to the county council’s support helpline on 0800 783 1966 - our friendly team will advise on the best support to help you in your current situation.

if they haven’t already. Not just for free school meals, but for the school clothing grants too - and by applying you will also secure additional funding for your school. The application process is so quick and straightforward, so don’t miss out!”parents eligible for free school meals to make sure they apply“I also urge

For more information about the support available to people struggling with the cost of living - whether you need financial, emotional or physical support - please visit the county council website


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Cumbria County Council’s cabinet has approved £2m worth of additional funding in response to the cost-of-living crisis to support individuals and families experiencing financial difficultly.