Money Advice

Universal financial support

For information on sources of financial support available to any family, see Wiltshire Council’s Family Information Service (FIS) financial section.

 Read more at the finance section of FIS website

For Disability specific support, you might like to look at:

Personal Budgets

A personal budget is the money Wiltshire Council allocates to an individual to meet their assessed support needs.

Read more about personal budgets

Direct payments

A Direct Payment is one way of meeting the assessed social care needs of families with a disabled child or young person. A direct payment is paid to the parents or carers instead of receiving care services delivered by the Council. Social workers are required to offer families a Direct Payment, as an alternative choice, if they are eligible for services.

Read more about direct payments

Short breaks scheme

The short breaks scheme is a Wiltshire Council direct payment scheme that allows eligible families to receive £600 to provide flexible leisure opportunities or support to their child or young person.

Read more about the Short Breaks Scheme

Disability living allowance (DLA)

Disability Living Allowance (DLA) is non contributory, non means tested and non taxable.  It is the main source of financial support available to cover the additional costs of a child living with a disability.

A child may qualify for DLA if he/she has a physical and/or learning disability and requires more help or supervision than other children of the same age.  If you are 16 years or older and making a new claim the DLA has now been replaced with the Personal Independence Payment (PIP)

Read more about the Disability Living Allowance (DLA)

Personal Independence Payment (PIP)

The Personal Independence Payment (PIP) is a benefit for people with a long-term health condition or impairment i.e. physical, sensory, mental, cognitive, intellectual or a combination of these.  The PIP was introduced in April 2013 and replaces the Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for 16 to 64 year olds.  It applies to new claims from June 2013.

People currently receiving Disability Living Allowance (DLA) will be reassessed on a rolling programme from October 2015 unless their award runs out before then or they ask for a reassessment.  The aim is for all eligible DLA claimant, aged 16 to 64, to have been reassessed for PIP by 2018.

Read more about the Personal Independence Payment (PIP)

Family fund

The family fund helps families with severely disabled or ill children and young people aged 17 and under by giving grants to make their lives easier.  This is a grant designed to help families on lower incomes.  

The family fund defines a severely disabled child or young person as someone who has additional complex needs or having a life threatening or serious condition which must be life limiting or long term (over 12 months).

Read more about the family fund

Disabled facilities grants

f you or someone living in your property is permanently disabled you may qualify for a Disabled Facilities Grant (DFG) towards the cost of providing adaptations and facilities to enable the disabled person to continue to live there. Such grants are given by the council under Part I of the Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996 and are means-tested except in the case of adaptations for children.

Read more about disabled facilities grants

The Community Foundation

The Community Foundation for Wiltshire and Swindon is a registered charity and grant making trust.  They offer financial assistance to young people who want to make the most of their potential.  The offer a variety of funds to help support 0-25 year olds across Wiltshire:

The Personal Support Fund

This grant fund is open to individuals up to the age of 25 who have been in the care of the local authority or have a disability.  Applicants must live in Swindon or Wiltshire or be in education funded by one of these Councils and wither they or their parents/carers are in receipt of means tested benefits.  Grants are available up to £1000.

The Vocational Grant Fund

This grant places all the emphasis on vocational training.  It makes grants to individuals aged between 16 and 25.  Applicants must usually have lived within the boundaries of Swindon or Wiltshire Councils for 5 years and the applicant or their parents/carers or guardians must be in receipt of means tested benefits.  Grants are available up to £1000.  The Foundation is particularly keen to fund “tools of the trade2 or vocational training.

Foundation Scholarships

The scholarship grant support students who want to gain an Undergraduate University degree.  The offer a “scholarship programme” providing grants of up to £5000 per annum for the duration of the student’s course.  Students must be aged between 17 & 24 at the time of application.

The Foundation wants to offer scholarships to exceptional individuals whose financial circumstances would normally stop them from going to University. Priority will be given to individuals that are themselves or their parents/carer are in receipt of means tested benefits. The Foundation seeks to support its scholars throughout their university career.

Foundation Scholarships are made through the Shuker Foundation in West Wiltshire and the Wiltshire Education Fund in the rest of Wiltshire and Swindon.

Grants are awarded to assist with general living expenses, purchase of books and course material costs whilst at university.

If you are interested in any of these opportunities please visit the Community Foundation website or telephone 01380 729284.

Access to work

An Access to Work grant helps pay for practical support if you have a disability or health condition so you can:

  • start working
  • stay in work
  • start your own business

The money doesn’t have to be paid back and will not affect your other benefits.

Read more about Pathway to employment

Discretionary housing payments

The Discretionary Housing Payment Scheme provides limited funding to support customers who, because of their specific circumstances, are unable to cover their housing costs through regular housing support. The aim is to reduce the risk of homelessness and support the stability of families and communities in line with the Council’s goal to build sustainable communities and protect the most vulnerable in society.

Read more about Discretionary Housing Payment


Disabled students’ allowances

If you are studying for a career in a health or social care profession you may get help from the NHS Bursary Fund if you have a physical disability, long term health condition, mental health difficulty or specific learning difficulty such as dyslexia.

Read more about disabled student allowances

Benefits while in hospital

For information and advice on what you might need to consider while in hospital.

Read more about benefits when in hospital

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Wiltshire Council