Derry City & Strabane - Emergency Fuel Support Programme




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Emergency Fuel Support Programme

Important Update on the Emergency Fuel Support Programme

The Emergency Fuel Support Programme set up by Council in response to the ongoing cost of living crisis is now closed.

The Programme, which was set up to provide a one-off emergency fuel payment of £100 to a household in a financial emergency, opened for referrals on 06 December and within hours the programme received in excess of 5,500 submissions.

Since then, the Council has been working diligently to identify all unique referrals and to progress with the eligibility checks and payment process.

All applicants to the programme have been issued with letters this week advising them of their eligibility status. Our partners the Advice providers are also carrying out eligibility checks and may be in contact with applicants in the coming days for additional information to advance with this process.

As part of this eligibility process, Council’s fuel payment partner Bryson Care is processing the fuel payments as follows –

  • Electricity support will be provided via a £100 top up or a £100 credit to your electricity account.
  • Oil support will be provided via a reference number and details of the oil supplier, including a contact number.

Council recognises the significant need as a result of the cost of living crisis and has been focussing on working with its partners to get all the referrals processed as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, due to the scale of the demand and the limited amount of funding the Council has been unable to offer fuel support to all the applicants. If you continue to need support during this time please contact one of local advice service providers within the Council area or you can get further information on support from Advice NI on

Please note that the Council Offices are closed on Monday 26th December, Tuesday 27th December and Wednesday 28th December.

If you have a query in relation to your referral please email and your query will be dealt with when the offices reopen on Thursday 29 December.

Derry City and Strabane District Council in response to the ongoing cost of living crisis has agreed to establish a Hardship Fund which will support a Discretionary Emergency Fuel Support Programme and the provision of additional Advice Services. The purpose of this programme is to provide a one-off emergency fuel payment of £100 to a household in a financial emergency and requiring support to make a fuel payment of electricity or oil. This is not a general fuel support programme. Only those who are in an emergency situation are advised to apply for the scheme, as it is specifically designed for households who are unable to pay their most recent fuel bill or to get a fuel top up.


How many homes will be supported?

The Emergency Fuel Support Programme will be available to 2,405 homes across the Council area who are in an emergency situation with fuel poverty. Each District Electoral Area has been allocated a percentage of the overall allocation based on the Council’s existing grant aid allocation template (of population, deprivation and rurality) as indicated below

·        Ballyarnett             - 420

·        Derg                      - 310

·        Faughan                - 241

·        Foyleside               - 248

·        Moor                      - 374

·        Sperrin                   - 202

·        Strabane                - 227

·        Waterside               - 383


How will the scheme operate?

The Emergency Fuel Support Programme will operate by a referral system whereby an individual can make a self referral or they can be referred by a Trusted Partner. A Trusted Partner can be for example a local community and voluntary organization, charity, church, school, statutory agency who has a knowledge of the household and knows they are in financial difficulty paying a fuel bill or getting a fuel top up.  The Trusted Partners or the household making the referral (self referral) must make a declaration on the Referral Form that the household is in an emergency financial situation and requires a one-off financial payment of £100 towards a fuel payment. Referrals should only be made in the case where emergency funding is required.


How can I apply?

To be considered for financial support, a Referral Form must be completed and submitted to the Emergency Fuel Support Programme. You can fill in the online form below or download the form and submit to one of the providers listed below. The scheme will go live on Tuesday 6th December at 9.30am. Applications made before this time will not be considered. 

The referral forms will be available from and can be returned to:

• Council Offices at Strand Road, Derry or Derry Road, Strabane or to

• Advice NW, 5th Floor Embassy Building, Strand Road, Derry

• Advice NW, Spencer House, Spencer Road, Derry

• Advice NW, Dock Street, Strabane

• RCD (Carnhill) Racecourse Road, Derry

Referral forms can be submitted to any of the providers as detailed above, or by emailing to .


What are the Eligibility Criteria?

A household can only receive one emergency fuel payment under this programme and it must be based within the Derry City and Strabane District Council area. To be considered eligible, a household must meet one of the following criteria and provide documentary evidence to demonstrate that they meet the criteria selected. The table below outlines the eligibility criteria and the documentary evidence required.  Note to be considered eligible only one criterion needs to be demonstrated.



Supporting Documentation

A member of the household is entitled to Free School Meals

Email confirming their entitlement from EA

The household is in debt with an energy provider

Most recent bill or photograph of their meter

There is a person with a disability in the household

Any disability benefit

A member of the household has recently been become unemployed (last 3months)

P45 or Universal Credit screenshot

A member of the household is on a zero hour contract

Letter or contract that states “as and when required” or “banking”

The gross annual income of the household is less than £40,000

P60 or benefits check or state pension or recent monthly bank statement


How will my Referral Form be processed?

All received referrals will be organised under their respective District Electoral Area and will be ranked within according to the time received. At the end of each day a tally will be drawn up on the number of forms received so that communications can be issued on the level of demand for each area and when the programme might close. All submitted referrals will receive an acknowledgement to advise that their form has been received and is being processed.

The two Advice Service Providers will undertake the eligibility checks on behalf of the Council. This process will continue until all the funding has been allocated.

Any referral forms missing information will be provided three days to submit the information, failure to do so will result in their referral being rejected. As the forms are checked and subject to the available funding, the household will either be advised that they have been successful and when to expect payment or unsuccessful due to demand or ineligibility.

Note: There is no ranking in the assessment of eligibility and the programme will operate on a first come basis. A household can only receive one payment under this programme.

In the event that for the final allocation, within any of the District Electoral Areas that there is more than one referral form with the same time received recorded, then the referrals will be placed in a box and in the presence of two officers not involved with the administration of the Fuel Support Programme, one of these officers will pull out a referral and the final allocation will be awarded to this household. For each of the District Electoral Areas it is proposed that a reserve list of five households is held in the event that a referral form received with an earlier time fails the eligibility check or does not submit any outstanding information within the three day designated period.

All eligible referrals will be sent to the Fuel Payment Partner processing their fuel payment according to their request fuel type.


If I am successful how will I get my fuel payment?

The Fuel Payment Partner (Bryson Energy) makes the payment of up £100 to the nominated energy supplier on behalf of the household or provides a credit voucher for top up for the fuel type to the household. The Fuel Payment Partner will notify the household when the payment has been made or to provide the top up code or the voucher number for the oil.

A household who has requested oil will have 28 days to use their voucher code which provides them with some flexibility should they wish to purchase more than the £100 allocated through this programme. The Oil Supplier will confirm to the Fuel Payment Partner once a delivery has been made.


If I am unsuccessful is there any other support?

The Council unfortunately does not have any other sources of income to assist in these difficult times. There are many excellent organisations offering support and we would encourage you visit for more details: