Support for our residents

We are working hard to support people in the city that are the most vulnerable.

To support people that need food, we are working with:

  • the community
  • Brighton & Hove Food Partnership
  • partner organisations

Please note: this situation is changing all the time. We will keep this page updated with the latest information.

Support for Clinically Extremely Vulnerable People

We have a list of more than 3000 people who are registered as clinically extremely vulnerable. We are contacting them to arrange for a government issued food parcel to be delivered. We will also find out what other support they need.  

If you have complex health needs but haven't received a letter from the NHS, you can register online or phone 0800 028 8327.

To be registered as clinically extremely vulnerable you will need to meet a list of criteria which is listed on GOV.UK. 

Community hub

We have created a community hub to support our most vulnerable residents. 

Request help for you or someone else by completing this form.

We can provide help with:

  • food
  • utilities
  • debt advice
  • social work support

How emergency food will be distributed

Referrals will be passed on to current food banks and neighbourhood-based community hubs. The Brighton & Hove Food Partnership has information for people who would like to get involved in a project or referrals. 

The neighbourhood-based community hubs are supported by:

  • our community engagement team
  • the Trust for Developing Communities
  • Hangleton and Knoll Project

We are also linking with faith groups and other communities of interest groups, to reach out to support all people in the city

Staff and volunteers at these locations will arrange for food parcels to be collected and delivered.

Some of the community hubs will also help with other needs like dog walking or medicine pick-ups. 

Inside the food hub

Take a look at the food hub at Hove Park School.


Where will the food come from?

Fareshare Sussex are continuing to deliver surplus produce to emergency food providers across the city. They will also receive additional donations of food organised at a national level. They will deliver fresh produce bought with funds raised via the Food Partnership’s Hungry at Home Crowdfund Campaign

Many of the city’s restaurants, cafes and catering companies donated produce when they had to close. Much of this has been given out already and projects have also been making and freezing meals for delivery in the coming weeks.

Donate food

If you are a business and would like to donate, use the online form to register to donate food

Donate to the Hungry at Home crowdfund. This will ensure that the Food Partnership can buy fresh and dry food at wholesale price. 

If you are going to a shop you can put items in the food bank or Fareshare donation basket.

Some food banks are trying to minimise the number of people coming to their locations and aren’t accepting donations of food on an ad hoc basis. 

This isn't the case with all food banks, so if there is a project you regularly support, please check with them about their specific arrangements.

Advice on food shopping during COVID-19

If people can afford to pay for their food they should.

We know that access to food is a problem for some vulnerable people. If you can go to the shops please avoid taking online delivery slots and leave them for people that need them the most.

Demand for emergency ‘free’ food continues to be high.

It is vital that ongoing sustainable solutions are found to help those that cannot afford to buy food. This helps support local businesses and makes sure more people don’t end up in need of emergency food.

Helping people to plan for their shopping and offering extra support to vulnerable people is a crucial element of this work.

The Brighton & Hove Food Partnership has a list of organisations that can help with shopping on their website.

They also list places that will deliver food to your door:

Support for people age 50+

Ageing Well have a helpline that can be reached on 07770 061 072. Their website has an extensive directory of support services including advice about shopping and special opening hours.

Support for people age 70+

If you are over the age of 70, you are strongly advised to be particularly stringent in following the social distancing rules.

This does not mean that you can't go the shops if you are healthy, especially if you have no alternative arrangement.

Many shops are doing a protected shopping time for older people.

Find more social distancing guidance on GOV.UK. 

Safety advice when shopping for other people

Guidance by BHCC Environmental Health and Public Health teams states COVID-19 is a respiratory illness.

It is very unlikely to be transmitted by exposure to food or food packaging.

You can follow these tips produced by BHCC Environmental Health and Public Health teams:

  • Avoid going into people’s homes if possible.
    • Leave food/goods outside on the doorstep
    • Let the person in isolation know that you are delivering soon via message or phone call
    • Keep 2 metres distance when if they open the door
    • Recommend that recipients wash their hands after taking the delivery into their home
  •  Shoppers to wash hands before and after deliveries
    • When out and about, if available keep a bottle of alcohol hand sanitiser to hand -hand sanitiser needs to have an alcohol content of at least 60% according to Public Health England
    • Homemade hand sanitiser may not be effective at killing the virus, and can damage skin. Alternatively carry soap, water and disposable hand towels to wash hands
  • A handy tip to tell people expecting home deliveries:
    • keep some shopping bags, cardboard boxes or even a laundry basket close by when the delivery is due so they can easily bring goods into the house

Shopping for more than one person

Tell the person managing the door queue that you are shopping for multiple people and ask permission to buy more items.

Support for NHS and essential workers

Many shops have a dedicated shopping time for NHS staff and essential workers, including carers. Please check with individual supermarkets and shops what their arrangements are when it comes to access and opening times for NHS Staff and essential workers, as this may vary.

Free school meals

This situation is continually changing

Schools will soon be moving to a voucher scheme. The Department of Education will send out vouchers to parents of children that currently receive free school meals. The value is £15 per week per child.

These can be used in Sainsburys, Tesco, Asda, Morrison and M&S.

Families that are online will get an e-voucher. Those that aren’t online will be given gift card

Your child’s school should be in touch directly to arrange this.

We are in discussion with Children’s Centre and Children’s Services about children who are at risk of neglect and for whom this solution may not work.

If you are aware of families entitled to a free school meal who may be struggling over holiday periods please make sure they are aware of Chomp.

Beware of scam emails about free school meals