Scottish Welfare Fund helps over 265,000 households

An Official Statistics Publication for Scotland.

The Scottish Welfare Fund continues to help Scottish households in need. Since the scheme began in April 2013, more than 265,000 individual households have been helped, with awards totalling £140.0 million to 30 June 2017.

Scotland’s Chief Statistician today released statistics on the Scottish Welfare Fund covering  the period from 1 April 2013 to 30 June 2017. The statistics showed that of the 265,000 households helped to 30 June 2017, almost 144,000 were single person households and more than 87,000 were families with children.

The Scottish Welfare Fund comprises of Community Care Grants – which help people to live independently – and Crisis Grants, which provide a safety net in a disaster or emergency.

Between April and June 2017, a total of £8 million was awarded through the Scottish Welfare Fund, this was 23% of the £34.4 million budget available (£33 million allocated for 2017/18 by the Scottish Government, plus £1.4 million underspend carried forward from 2016/17).

Community Care Grants

• Between 1 April and 30 June 2017, 16,430 Community Care Grant applications were decided and an award was made in 9,830 cases.  Overall, 60% of cases were successful, six percentage points lower than the same quarter last year.

• Between April and June 2017, Local Authorities awarded £5.8 million in Community Care Grants, with an average award value of around £590, the most common expenditure was on floor coverings, white goods, and furniture.

Crisis Grants

• Between April and June 2017, 42,155 Crisis Grant applications were decided and an award was made in 28,825 cases.  Overall, 68% of applications were successful, a four percentage point decrease compared to the same quarter last year. 

• Between April and June 2017, Local Authorities awarded £2.2 million in Crisis Grants with an average award value of around £75. The most common expenditure was on food, essential heating costs and other living expenses.


The full statistical publication is available online.

This publication contains:  an overview of who has been helped by the scheme; details on the processing times for applications; information on what the Scottish Welfare Fund has been spent on  and household analyses.  Local Authority analyses and details of the review process are also provided.

Official statistics are produced by professionally independent statistical staff – more information on the standards of official statistics in Scotland can be accessed online.

On 1 April 2013, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) abolished  two elements of the Social Fund -  Community Care Grants and Crisis Loans  - and transferred funds previously spent on them to Scottish Ministers.  In its place, the Scottish Government established the Scottish Welfare Fund (SWF). The Scottish Welfare Fund is a national scheme run by local authorities, based on guidance from Scottish Ministers.  The guidance has been developed in partnership with COSLA, Local Authorities and other stakeholders.  


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