Hardship Fund

Offering a helping hand when it is needed most.

Many people struggle to make ends meet and when unexpected costs arise can suddenly find themselves in very difficult circumstances. The Hardship Fund allows Greggs Foundation to offer a helping hand to people when they need it most. We offer grants to help people purchase individual items that can make a huge difference to family life - such as a washing machine or fridge freezer. We also help people facing significant changes by for instance buying them equipment for a new baby or uniforms for a child starting school. Our grant making team reviews applications on a weekly basis meaning that the people who request our help get the items that they need as quickly as possible. 

The Hardship Fund was established in 1993 and since then it has given over £3 million to families in poverty in the North East of England.

The Hardship Fund operates in the four counties of North-East England, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear, Durham and Teesside. Applications must be submitted by a social organisation or charity on behalf of the client.

The Hardship Fund works in partnership with East Durham Partnership to supply Cookers, Fridge /Freezers and Washing Machines directly to families in need. 

BACs payments of up to £150 can be made towards other items including beds and bedding, baby equipment, clothing and flooring.  

Supermarket Vouchers for food can be awarded to a maximum of £100

We are hugely over-subscribed at present and have sufficient funds to award around half the requests we receive. We have identified three priorities to ensure our grants make the greatest difference.

We are far more likely to support an application if it meets the priority criteria listed below:

  • We prioritise families over individuals
  • We prioritise the most financially excluded people
  • We prioritise items that will make the most difference


Item and maximum available grant:

  • Cookers - Supplied direct by East Durham Partnership. Please note we do not include installation
  • Washing Machine - Supplied direct by East Durham Partnership
  • Fridge/Freezer - Supplied direct by East Durham Partnership
  • Vented Tumble Dryer - Supplied directly by East Durham Partnership. Please note we do not include installation
  • Flooring - £100 maximum
  • Beds / Bedding - £100 maximum
  • Baby Equipment - £100 maximum
  • Clothing - £50 per person maximum (up to a maximum of £150)
  • Supermarket Voucher (Food) - £50 maximum for an individual upto a maximum of £100 for a family


Please be aware that we can't fund any of the items listed below:

  • Unspecified costs
  • Repayment of loans
  • Bankruptcy petition fees
  • Holidays
  • Funeral Expenses
  • Medical Equipment
  • Computer Equipment


How to apply:

Please note: We can only accept applications from recognised social organisations such as charities registered with the Charity Commission, housing associations and social services acting on behalf of a family or individual in need.

Applications are assessed weekly and you can expect a response within two weeks of your application.

Please apply online following the links below for the application form and online applications guidance. Please ensure that you submit your application by 4pm Friday to be considered in the following weeks' assessments.

Applications should be for one item only and not multiple items.

It is your responsibility to ensure that the grant is spent appropriately and receipts provided for all purchases which must be made available to us on request. 

If an application is successful, we are only able to accept another application from an organisation for that family / individual after 1 year.

If an application is unsuccessful, organisations are able to apply again for the family / individual after 12 weeks.

The Greggs Foundation aims to respond to all applications, successful or not. However, if you haven't had a decision within three weeks of your application you can assume that it was unsuccessful.

Apply now