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Eligibility Criteria

Our Community Chest Fund has been set up to provide emergency relief funding to residents of Lewisham Deptford who are in immediate crisis. It does not fund ongoing living expenses and seeks to avoid creating dependency.

The maximum a resident can receive in any six month period is £500.

In addition to living on a low income and residing in Lewisham, grant applicants must fall into one or more of the following “priority areas” listed below to be eligible to apply:


  • People who are homeless or vulnerably housed

  • People with no recourse to public funds (NRPF) due to their immigration status

  • People affected by domestic abuse

  • People affected by benefit sanctions and/or benefit delays

Examples of items the Community Chest can fund:


  • ID - without proof of identity, such as a citizen card, it can be difficult for individuals (particularly those who are homeless) to begin the application process for benefits. Families seeking to regularise their immigration status must own a passport in order to submit a valid immigration application.

  • Travel costs - prepaid travel cards for essential travel e.g. to advice and support meetings, legal appointments, job interviews.

  • Essential clothing e.g. suitable clothing for interviews or a particular job, school uniform for children.

  • Basic furniture, white goods and other essential household items (kitchen utensils, bedding, portable heaters). When homeless people are offered accommodation it is often unfurnished.

  • Baby items e.g. clothing and essential equipment.

Examples of items the Community Chest CANNOT fund:

  • Payments towards trips/holidays, gifts, visa applications, general appeals, ICT equipment and items that have already been purchased.

To ensure support is distributed as fairly as possible the fund has a limit of one award per recipient in any six-month period (timed from the date of the first award).


Support towards multiple items can be requested together in one application to prevent unfairly disadvantaging people who might require financial assistance for a number of low cost items i.e travel costs and clothing.

Residents with NRPF who require urgent temporary accommodation or face eviction due to rent arrears or are struggling to pay fuel/water bills will be considered on a case by case basis and may only be granted as a last resort where assistance for this cannot be obtained from elsewhere, at the discretion of the partner organisation.

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