Cost of living crisis - support for families

Cost-of-living support

Find out what help and support is available to you and your family as the cost-of-living crisis continues to bite.

Get in touch with us to let us know if you’re struggling with your finances

TEL: 0191 267 4315


We know everyone is feeling the pinch this winter and we want to support those families in our school community who are impacted the most. If you’re struggling with your finances, please do get in touch to let us know, as there may be things we can suggest which will help. We want to do everything we can to help you and your child through this difficult winter. At Lemington Riverside, Kim Cole is our attendance and welfare officer who can sign post you to a huge amount of support for a range of issues.

Contact your local Citizen’s Advice Bureau or Family Hub

Citizen’s Advice Bureau (CAB)

You don’t have to be a UK citizen to get support from your local CAB, you just need to be
a resident of the local area. The CAB can help you with:

  Getting benefits or other financial support organised

  Accessing support for essential costs (food, bills, rent)

Visit the Citizens Advice’s website or contact your local branch to book an appointment. Our nearest branch is Citizen’s Advice Newcastle, 33 New Bridge Street, NE1 8AX.

Family Hub

Contact your local Family Hub to get help accessing all the support you might need as a family. Charlton Street Community Hub will be opening very soon right here at Lemington Riverside. In the mean-time, our nearest Family Hub is The Galafield Centre, Newbiggin Lane, NE5 1LZ.

Check you’re paying the right amount of tax

Make sure you’re on the right tax code. If you aren’t you might be due a refund. Use the Money Saving Expert’s free tax code calculator to find out.

Claim any benefits you’re entitled to

Use 1 of these benefits calculators to determine whether there are any benefits you could be claiming:


  Policy in Practice

  Support for migrant families – use this calculator if you are a migrant family, or if you have no recourse to public funds

You may be able to get benefits paid early if you’re already feeling the squeeze - this is known as ‘a short-term benefit advance’ - you will need to contact the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) office (Our nearest office is 1 Cathedral Square, Newcastle, NE1 1EE) that’s dealing with your claim.

Check you’ve received all the government’s cost of living payments

The government’s cost of living payment is available for those receiving certain benefits or tax credits. You don’t need to apply for these – if you’re eligible the money should go straight into your account.

If you think you’re due a payment, but haven’t received one – report a missing payment to the government here.

Be aware of scams! If you receive any emails, texts or phone calls asking you to fill in an application form or asking for your bank details to receive a cost of living payment, do not talk to them or send a reply. Get more information on cost of living scams on the Money Saving Expert’s website 

Find out what help you can get with your energy bills

Take a look at these resources from Simple Energy Advice, the British Gas Energy Trust and the Money Saving Expert website.

Let us know if your child is entitled to free school meals (FSM)

If your child is eligible for free school meals (FSM) you need to get them registered. This will allow them to get a free meal at school, and we’ll get extra funding to support your child’s learning. We can check if your child is eligible for free school meals, please request a form from the school office in person or by calling or emailing us.

See what other support you can get from your local authority

Local authorities have lots of different schemes that you might be eligible for, including:

Get free or low-cost food

If you’re worried about not having enough food to feed your family, you’re not alone. There are
a number of places offering support.

Use food waste apps and websites like Olio (for free food and household items from your local community), Too Good To Go (for low cost food from local restaurants), or Low Price Foods (food that has passed its best before date, but is still safe to consume)

Further information:

- Contact StepChange, if you’re struggling with debt

- Contact Shelter if you’re having issues related to housing

- Get free household goods on Freecycle

- Contact the Salvation Army for emergency assistance

- See if you’re eligible for grants from Turn2us

- Single parents can get support from Gingerbread