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Emergency grants

Emergency grants are usually up to ​£150 ​and help to support people living with cystic fibrosis (CF), and those who care for them, when they are in financial difficulties.

COVID-19 emergency grants

Within our usual emergency welfare grant programme, we have a limited fund to provide emergency grants to provide immediate help to those who are struggling to cope financially as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Our budget is limited and we need to prioritise support for those in most need, so we kindly ask those who can manage financially without a grant not to apply.

How we can help 

The focus on these grants is to protect the health of adults and children with CF through this difficult time, by supporting those in immediate financial crisis and ensuring they can afford the goods and services they need to stay well.

This can include (but is not limited to):

  • £150 grants to help with basic daily essentials where you have experienced a loss of income or an increase in costs due to the virus, and are struggling to afford the food and basic supplies you need. The application needs to relate to the health of the person with CF, as we can only help in situations where there is a risk to health (eg through not being able to afford enough food).  
  • Grants for up to £200 for one piece of home exercise equipment (eg an exercise bike, treadmill, trampoline), in exceptional circumstances where someone with CF is unable to exercise at all due to shielding guidance.
  • Up to £250 to fund towards white goods (eg fridges, washing machines) on an emergency basis. These grants will only be provided where there is a clear risk to health (eg a broken down fridge meaning you cannot safely store medication).

Emergency grants are usually processed within a week. We ask that you only apply for the amount you need, so that we can help as many people in the cystic fibrosis community as possible. Please note that we are unable to provide grants for items that have already been purchased.

Your application will need to be endorsed by a member of your cystic fibrosis team – they can fill in their endorsement on the form if you are able to email it to them, or you can ask them to email us directly with their endorsement: helpline@cysticfibrosis.org.uk

It’s important that your CF team are aware if you are struggling financially and your health is at risk. CF teams have suggested that you complete your section of the form, and when you email it into us you copy them in and ask them to provide the endorsement directly to us. This will reduce the amount of emails CF teams need to deal with at such a busy time.

We are trying make sure we can help those who need us most. This means that we cannot usually accept more than one application per person for our emergency grants for food and daily essentials for the same situation (eg, loss of income/increased costs due to COVID-19).

However, we may be able to accept a second application if it has been at least a month since your first application, and you are still in urgent need of food and basic essentials. In exceptional cases, where the health of someone with CF is in danger, we may be able to process a second grant sooner – please contact our Helpline before applying.

Apply for a COVID-19 exercise grant

Since mid-April 2020, we have been providing grants for home exercise to ensure people with CF could continue to exercise while unable to leave the house due to shielding. In this time, we have supported 366 people, to a total cost of over £65,000, and have ensured the health of people with CF was protected through a difficult time. As shielding guidance is changing, people with CF across the UK are now more able to get out for exercise, and can resume walking, running, cycling, some non-contact sports etc. This means we need to focus our support elsewhere, and we are preparing to close this grant fund. We will process all eligible grant applications received before Monday 6 July.

From Monday 6 July you will only be able to apply for an emergency grant for home exercise equipment in exceptional circumstances where your individual situation means you are still unable to access any form of exercise safely due to the pandemic. To apply, please download and complete the application form. The fund will close completely on 1 August. If you are eligible, you may be able to apply for a health and wellbeing grant instead. 

To apply for an emergency grant for food and basic essentials or for white goods that are needed urgently due to COVID-19, more details and the application form can be found below.

Please contact the Helpline if you have any questions or would like help completing a form. Our Helpline team can complete the form over the phone with you if you are struggling to access or edit the form. If you need us to call you, please email the Helpline with your phone number and ask for a call-back to complete a grant application form.

Please email all completed forms to us – our office is currently closed and all staff are working from home, so we have very limited access to post.

Further support

Please note that we cannot help with ongoing costs such as rent and bills. We have some information on financial support available for you during the coronavirus pandemic.

We also cannot help with the costs of computer equipment (eg if this is needed for a child with CF to access home-learning) but the Family Fund may be able to help with this.

If you are not in an emergency situation but need funds for goods or services to support your health and wellbeing, you can find out more about our health and wellbeing grants. Please note we have currently suspended our holiday grant programme.


What are emergency grants?

These grants of up to £150 provide short-term support to children and adults living with CF (the applicants), and those that care for them, when they are in immediate financial difficulty and/or an item or service is urgently needed to stop their health deteriorating. 

Examples include:

  • A loss of income due to illness that means support is needed for daily living costs
  • A loss of or delay to benefits that means support is needed for daily living costs
  • An unplanned or extended hospital admission that means support is needed for travel costs to and from hospital
  • Emergency household repairs
  • Professional cleaning services at home when the level of dust/mould would have an immediate negative impact on health
  • Replacement of household appliances and furniture where the lack of the item is causing an immediate negative impact on health (eg a fridge has broken and is needed to store medicine, or a washing machine has broken and handwashing clothes is leading to problems with damp)

How can I apply?

Please read the guidance on this page before applying. Once you have done this, please download and complete the application form.

Emergency grant form

We are working hard to keep our services running as normal, but may struggle to access our post and anything posted to us may be delayed. Please email applications to helpline@cysticfibrosis.org.uk if you can.

Please take a look at these other frequently asked questions before applying for a grant:

How much can I apply for?

Emergency grants are £150, however this can be increased in exceptional circumstances. For example, we may be able to increase this amount to cover the cost of white goods

Does the application form need a supporting statement (endorsement)?

Yes. The supporting statement needs to be completed by a member of the applicant’s CF team (the endorser) and either signed by them or emailed to us from their professional email account. It is important that your CF team is aware that you are in an emergency situation that may have an effect on your health.

If this is proving difficult please contact us.

When will I receive the grant?

Emergency grants are processed weekly. If the application is successful, payment will be made to the bank account provided within 10 days of receiving a complete application.

Who should complete the application form?

The applicant, their parent/carer, partner or a member of their CF team can complete the form. Regardless of who completes the form, the ‘applicant’ is always the person living with cystic fibrosis. If the applicant is over 18, they need to be made aware that the application is being made on their behalf.

Is there anything I cannot apply for?

Emergency grants are assessed on an individual basis, but in general, we cannot give grants for:

  • Routine travel costs such as planned hospital admissions for IVs and clinic appointments
  • Existing debts, loans or credit card bills
  • Ongoing costs such as rent or mortgage payments
  • Items that have already been purchased

How often can I apply?

Emergency grants are assessed on a case by case basis, so they can be applied for as and when needed. However, our limited resources mean we cannot meet ongoing costs and we are unable to accept multiple applications from the same applicant for the same situation. If you are unsure about this, please contact us before making the application.

I have a question, can I speak to someone?

Yes. Please call our Helpline on 0300 373 1000 or email helpline@cysticfibrosis.org.uk if you have any questions about any of our grants.

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Cystic fibrosis, or CF, affects the lungs, digestive system and other organs, and there are around 10,500 people living with it in the UK.

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