South Hams District Council Coronavirus Community Support Helpline

The council runs a helpline to help people who are feeling isolated, or who need help, support or other advice.

Helpline: 01803 861297. Lines open Monday to Friday from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm or apply online

Community support

The council’s website has details of where you can request or offer community support in South Hams or find a community support group in your area. People who cannot afford to buy food may be able to get help from a food bank:

Totnes Food Bank: https://connectionhubs.weebly.com/food-bank.html

Dartmouth Food Bank: https://www.dartmouthanddistrictfoodbank.org.uk/

Kingsbridge Food Bank: https://www.facebook.com/KingsbridgeFoodbank/

Ivybridge Food Bank: https://ivybridge.foodbank.org.uk/

Help to pay council tax

Council Tax Reduction is available for people on a low income to help them pay their council tax.  For people of working age, a banded scheme is used to work out how much council tax they have to pay.  Depending on their income and household size, they may qualify for a reduction of between 25% and 85% of the full amount.

For people of pension age, entitlement is based on a national means-tested scheme and can reduce the amount of council tax payable by up to 100%.

The council also has an emergency hardship scheme for people who are still struggling to pay their council tax and experiencing financial hardship even after any reductions are applied.

See the council tax section of the council’s website for details of other council tax discounts and exemptions, as well as details of how to pay council tax.

Discretionary housing payments

You can apply for Discretionary Housing Payments if you are struggling to pay the shortfall between your rent and any housing benefit you receive.

COVID-19 Hardship Fund

In association with Devon County Council, the council has launched a Welfare Support Fund to support those whose financial situation has been affected by the current pandemic and are now out of cash for basic essentials for their household.

Test and Trace Support Payment

People who have been told to self-isolate may be entitled to a £500  Test and Trace self-isolation payment if they will lose income as a result. To qualify for a payment under the government scheme, the person must be in receipt of a qualifying benefit (Universal Credit, Working Tax Credits, Income-related Employment and Support Allowance, Income based Job Seekers Allowance, income Support or Pension Credit). But the Council also has a  Discretionary Scheme for people who are not in receipt of one of these benefits.