In times of financial crisis or distress, local emergency relief services offer immediate material assistance, as well as referral for more intensive support.
During winter, high utility bills can throw people into financial shock. For others, financial hardship is caused by unforeseen or life-changing events like illness or the loss of a partner.
In such times of financial crisis, emergency relief organisations offer immediate, one-off financial or material support, such as:
- food, transport or chemist vouchers
- part-payment of utility bills
- food parcels or clothing
- budgeting assistance.
Emergency relief organisations can also refer people to other organisations more intensive support such as financial counselling, foodbanks and social support. This early intervention with a wraparound approach can lead to better outcomes and new community networks.
Find emergency relief
If you or someone you know needs emergency relief, there are a few ways to find out about services near you:
- The DSS Grants Service Directory lists all emergency relief services across Australia. You can use filters to narrow your search
- Ask Izzy is a free and anonymous way to find national and local support such as housing, meals, healthcare, counselling, legal advice and more
- The COTA Victoria information line on 1300 135 090 can advise you on emergency relief services close to you.