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The current processing time for new applications and changes to benefit claims is an average of 6 weeks. If you contact us with a general enquiry online we will reply to you within 48 working hours.

The Crisis Support scheme is designed to assist vulnerable people with essential items which they do not have the money to pay for themselves due to an emergency or crisis situation.

Who can we help?

To be considered for an award of Crisis Support, you must:

  • Except in exceptional circumstances, normally live in Torbay and have done so for the last three months
  • Not be a person subject to immigration control or have no recourse to public funds
  • Show that you do not have the funds to pay for the items yourself or could not easily get the money from another source
  • Not already have been awarded the maximum number of payments – only two payments are normally allowed in any rolling 12 month period
  • Not be waiting for an application for benefit through the Jobcentre Plus Office. If this is the case you need to telephone 0845 608 8545 as you may be able to apply for a Short Term Benefit Advance.

Grants available

Daily living expenses

We can consider awards for food, gas, electric or any other essential daily costs but only where you are normally responsible for paying for them. If food is awarded it will be in the form of a food parcel from a local food bank.

Rent in advance

If you are receiving Housing Benefit you should apply for Discretionary Housing Payments to help with rent in advance instead of Crisis Support.

You must be homeless, threatened with homelessness or have an essential need to move. Awards can only be made where the new rent is less than 10% above your Local Housing Allowance rate (LHA).

The maximum award will be no more than one months rent in advance at your LHA rate. If your landlord wants you to pay more, you would have to pay the difference. We do not award for fees or any other costs.

Help with deposits

Crisis Support does not pay for cash deposits. The Council operates a Deposit Bond Scheme instead. If you need help with a deposit as well as rent in advance you can let us know on the Crisis Support application and the Crisis Support Team will refer your case to the Bond Scheme Officer.  Please see our Bond Scheme for further information.


Grants are not repayable

Loans available

Furniture & White Goods 

Only essential items will be considered and to qualify you must be setting up home for the first time or you must have lost the items due to an emergency or crisis situation.

Removals & storage 

Any move must be because there is a threat of homelessness, and we can only consider help with storage if there was a crisis situation which meant belongings could not be kept elsewhere.


Loans are interest free and can only be granted if you can show that you can afford to repay the money, usually within a year. If you do not repay the money you may not be able to get any further help from Crisis Support in the future and the repayments may be deducted from the benefits you receive.

Unforunately the application form is currently unavailable

Please ensure you supply us with a contact telephone number or an active email address.

When will I receive my payments?

The service is available Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm. 

Applications for daily living expenses will be looked at on the same day if they are received before 1pm and the next working day if received after 1pm.

Applications for anything else will be looked at within seven days of receiving the claim or within seven days of receiving any supporting evidence we ask you for.