Money, benefits, debt advice and employment questions
If you are experiencing financial worries, have concerns about debt or are worried about your job, there are lots of organisations you can turn to who can offer free, high quality, confidential advice to help you. They can help make sure that you are receiving all the money that you’re entitled to and that you aren’t paying out more than you have to.
Citizens’ Advice provide free, confidential, non-discriminatory advice and information to the residents of Monmouthshire and surrounding areas. Monmouthshire County Citizens Advice provides advice in a variety of areas including Debt, Benefits, Family & Relationships, Consumer, legal and more
Citizens’ Advice’s goal is to help everyone find a way forward, whatever problem they face.
- Abergavenny and Monmouth Offices: 01873 856466. Open: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, 10am – 2pm
- Caldicot and Chepstow: 01291 422119. Open Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, 10am – 1pm
- Outside of these hours: 0300 3302117
- Or contact via webchat: Type ‘webchat’ in Citizens Advice web page search bar
Christians Against Poverty:
Whether it’s money worries keeping you up at night, or you just can’t seem to shake that bad habit, or you’re tired of going for job interviews that never get you anywhere – CAP has a service that can help you. Telephone: 0800 328 0006.
Turn2us is a national charity helping people when times get tough. We provide financial support to help people get back on track. Includes a useful benefits calculator and advice on accessing small grants.
Mind’s welfare rights service helps to make sure you are getting the right benefits at the right level and can provide support with making benefits claims. Telephone: 01873 858275
Gateway Credit Union:
Credit Unions like Gateway to serve their members and their community and to offer products and services unavailable elsewhere. Members of the Credit Union save regularly and their savings are used to make loans to other members. Gateway can be contacted by phone or online and also have a branch in Bulwark, Chepstow. Telephone: 01495 742500.
Debt Advice Foundation:
Debt Advice Foundation is a national debt advice and education charity offering free, confidential support and advice to anyone worried about debt. Telephone: 0800 622 6151.
National Debtline has helped millions of people with their debts. They’ll talk you through options and give clear advice on how to take back control. Telephone: 0808 808 4000.
StepChange Debt Charity:
StepChange helps change the lives of thousands of people every week. Their expert advice is impartial and personalised to each individual situation. Telephone: 0800 138 1111.
PayPlan’s supportive, non-judgemental team of advisers help thousands of people beat their debts every year, and treat all of their calls with the strictest confidence. Telephone: 0800 280 2816.
There is information and advice on benefits entitlement (including Universal Credit) and details on how to make claims available on the .gov website and through the Universal Credit helpline – 0800 328 5644
For local advice and support you can also call Monmouthshire Council’s Benefits Service on 01633 644644 or visit https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/home/counciltaxandbenefits/ The team can help with Housing Benefit, Universal Credit, Discretionary Housing Payments and Council Tax Reduction.
They can also help with individual tailored plans that might suit you better – for example, paying your council tax in twelve instalments across the year instead of ten.
Support for businesses and the self employed
The economic consequences of the pandemic have been huge, not least for business owners and the self employed. To help you make sure you are accessing all the financial support that you’re entitled to, there is information on Monmouthshire Council’s web pages here: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/business-advice/ and from Business Wales here: https://businesswales.gov.wales/
Support for veterans and their families
If you or a member of your family has served in the armed forces then you may be able to receive help from SSAFA. More information about the support they can provide with housing, welfare, benefits and financial assistance is available here: https://www.ssafa.org.uk/get-help/welfare-and-benefits
There is more information about help and support available for veterans and their families here: https://www.monmouthshire.gov.uk/armed-forces/advice-help-and-support/
Financial support for unpaid Carers
Carers can apply for small grants of up to £500 to address financial pressures and emergency needs. Examples of eligible items and activities include, but are not limited to:
• Purchase of household items e.g. washing machine, bed or fridge etc.
• Assistance with the purchase of food
• Purchase of technology e.g. laptop, mobile phones, tablets or data
• Entertainment subscriptions e.g. Audible, Amazon Prime, gaming, Netflix etc.
Carers can apply for a grant via the online application form on the Carers’ Trust website: https://carerfriendly.co.uk/grants
Discretionary Assistance Fund:
This is a ‘last resort’ fund from Welsh Government intended to support people experiencing serious hardship. To provide more help for those households facing significant additional hardship due to the Coronavirus crisis, Welsh Government has asked the DAF Service Centre personnel to apply greater flexibility and discretion with regard to the number and frequency of DAF payments that people can claim during this period.
You can apply online for a Discretionary Assistance Fund payment at
www.gov.wales/discretionary-assistancefund-daf/how-apply or by calling free on 0800 859 5924.