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We are aware that this is an anxious time, particularly for carers. This special e-bulletin summarises support available in the community for those who are vulnerable, isolated or struggling financially. The information is not exhaustive, but we hope it points you in the right direction. If you would like more detailed national information, we suggest you check Carers UK and Disability Rights UK.

The situation is fast moving, and this information may change. Services are listed for general information purposes only. Please check directly with a service for the latest information.

This information was updated 6 April 2020 with information on food deliveries and parcels, Croydon Council COVID-19 helpline and Croydon Council council tax support.

Register as a vulnerable person

If you are extremely vulnerable to coronavirus, you can register as an extremely vulnerable person with the government. This can help you get food deliveries/parcels if needed.

You can register the person you care for on their behalf. If you are not sure if you are eligible, check the website.

Register online.

Contact Croydon Council for support for an extremely vulnerable person

If you are caring for a extremely vulnerable person in Croydon who needs support, call the Croydon Council helpline on 020 8604 7787. If you can't get through, use this form to request a callback.

Food vouchers and deliveries

Disability Rights UK lists all the support offered by different supermarkets. Scroll to the section on shopping. inews provides a summary but please note that this information may change over time, so it's best to check with individual supermarkets.

The council runs three food stops with community partners in Fieldway, Selsdon and Thornton Heath If you're eligible, you can get £20 worth of fresh food and other groceries for £3.50 per week. For more information, email gcc@croydon.gov.uk or call:
• New Addington - 01689 844 277.
• Selsdon - 020 8657 7864.
• Thornton Heath - 020 8653 7353.

You may be eligible for food vouchers for Tesco, Sainsbury's Morrison's and Asda. Contact Croydon Council's Discretionary Support Team:
email dhp2@croydon.gov.uk
call 020 8604 7226 from 9am to 4pm, Monday to Friday

A number of community groups are offering food deliveries and parcels in different parts of Croydon:
• Revivify Community Initiative (Croydon-wide) - emergency food deliveries for those in need during COVID-19 throughout all of Croydon. Email communityfoodbank@sa-ho.co.uk or call 07757 754 637.
• South Croydon Day Centre for the Elderly (South Croydon) - supplies and phone check-ins for older residents while the centre is closed. Call 020 8681 7948 or email office@southcroydoncentre.org.
• Oasis Community Partnership (South Norwood) - delivering weekly ‘foodcycle’ meals on Friday evenings to local vulnerable families. Visit https://volunteer.foodcycle.org.uk/referral to refer.
• Good Food Matters (New Addington/Fieldway) - regular activities are closed but email amanda@goodfoodmatters.org.uk or call 07715 905 033 for information on food deliveries.
• Alive Community Centre (Thornton Heath) - home food deliveries for residents in the CR7 postcode. Visit www.mershamroad.org, email thehub@mershamroad.org or contact 07305 523 912 for more information.
• Esther Community Enterprise (Croydon-wide) - Food parcel and foodbank service. Call 07947 488 497 or 07891 555 938.
• Salvation Army (Selsdon, New Addington and Forestdale) - emergency food parcels for local vulnerable or isolated people/families with no support. Please visit www.salvationarmy.org.uk/new-addington, or email new.addington@salvationarmy.org.uk or thevinefoodbank@gmail.com.

This is not an exhaustive list, so please email info@carersinfo.org.uk if you need more information or support.

Help from local community groups and charities

Simply Connect Croydon (run by Croydon Voluntary Action) is listing sources of voluntary sector support in Croydon. Check their website.

If you are a Croydon voluntary sector organisation, please let them know what services you are able to offer by emailing connectwellcroydon@cvalive.org.uk

Mutual aid groups for COVID-19

There are a number of COVID-19 mutual aid groups for local areas across the UK. These are self-organised groups of local people who volunteer to support people self-isolating in their area whilst following government guidelines. Please note that these groups are volunteer-led and not associated with a particular organisation. Visit the Croydon Facebook group for more details.

Food and Essentials Hub for older people Age UK Croydon

Age UK Croydon is supporting older people in the borough with their Food and Essentials Hub.

If you are an older person in Croydon and need help or food and essential hygiene items, but can’t get out – or if you know someone in that position – please call the Age UK Croydon ASC helpline on 020 8686 0066 or email asc@adviceservicescroydon.org.uk and the service can try to get you the things you need, delivered safely to your door for FREE.

PLEASE NOTE: This is not a Food Bank. Please only come along to the hub if you are donating items, or if you are a volunteering collecting items to deliver to others.

Financial help

The current situation is putting financial pressure on many of us.

Turn2Us explains how welfare benefits are being adjusted to support people, and how to claim.

If you need help with benefit advice, form filling and benefit appeals you can contact the Croydon Welfare Rights team:email WelfareRightsTeam@croydon.gov.uk – email is the preferred method of contact at this time.
phone 0800 731 5920 – operating from Monday to Friday, 9am to 4pm. Please note there is no face-to-face service.
Money Saving Expert summarises financial support, including information on energy bills. The government has agreed measures with energy companies to protect the energy supply of people on prepaid meters who are self-isolating.

Help with housing

Council tax help

Croydon Council is offering extra support with council tax, including delaying repayments until June 2020, and extra support for people on low incomes.

For more information, contact the team: email Croyhben@croydon.gov.uk or call 020 8726 7000 between 9am and 4pm, Monday to Friday.

Help with rent

You will probably need to claim Universal Credit to get help with rent and housing costs. See the Croydon Council Universal Credit page for details on how to claim.

Discretionary Housing Payments (DHP)

If you already receive Housing Benefit or the housing element of Universal Credit, you may be able to receive support from Croydon Council to top up housing costs for a limited time. This is discretionary, which means it is up to the council to decide if you are eligible to claim it based on the evidence you submit in your application. See the Croydon Council DHP guide for details.

Children with special educational needs

If you are self-isolating or diagnosed with coronavirus and you have concerns about care for your child or young person with SEND while you're unwell, contact the Children With Disabilities duty teams. The phone lines are answered between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday.

The Coronavirus Act temporarily changed the law on Education Health and Care Plans - Special Needs Jungle explains what the changes mean.

Emergency cards and proof of caring

We now have our Carer Emergency Cards and Carers Membership Cards available electronically.

In the event of an emergency, the card shows emergency workers that you are a carer and includes any emergency contact details.

Download a Carers Emergency Card.

Our free membership card can be used as unofficial proof of caring status. If you aren't sure if you're a member or if you need a replacement card, please contact us.

Get regular updates on carer support

In these difficult times, it is more important than ever to be informed. Sign up to our e-bulletin for regular updates on support available to carers in Croydon.

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