Specialist Advice

+ Ashford Borough Citizens Advice

Ashford Borough Citizens Advice offer free, confidential and impartial advice in a number of areas including Housing, Debt, Employment and Welfare Benefits.

+ Addiction support

Drinkaware

National alcohol helpline. If you're worried about your own or someone else's drinking, you can call this free helpline in complete confidence.

  • Call 0300 123 1110
  • Freephone lines are open 9am-8pm on weekdays and 11am-4pm on weekends

Frank

National drugs charity offering friendly support and advice to anyone concerned about their own drug or someone else's.

  • Call 0300 123 6600
  • Phone lines are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week (calls from landlines cost no more than a normal national call, calls from a mobile may vary depending on your phone network)
  • You can talk to Frank is 120 languages – just call the same number and an interpreter will be there if you want

Gamcare

National gambling helpline providing confidential advice, information and emotional support to anyone experiencing problems with gambling.

  • Call 0808 802 0133
  • Freephone lines are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week
  • Ask for language line support in your chosen language. You will then be able to have a three-way conversation with an interpreter and a trained adviser

DrugFAM

For those affected by someone else's drug or alcohol addiction, or those bereaved through drug or alcohol use. Many of their clients feel a huge sense of relief at being able to talk to the trained support team and realise that they no longer have to cope on their own.

  • Call 0300 888 3853
  • Freephone line is open 9am-9pm, seven days a week

+ Advice line

The Advocacy People

Provides advocacy services for NHS complaints, mental health, care and support and community peer and citizens advocacy.

+ Benefit helplines

Bereavement Allowance – 0800 731 0139

Healthy Start Vouchers – 0845 607 6823

(for people on benefits and either 10 weeks pregnant, a child under 4, or someone who is under 18 and pregnant)

JS/ESA/Income support – 0800 169 0310

Maternity Allowance – 0800 1690283

Short Term Benefit Advance – 0800 055 6688

Social Fund/Budgeting Loans/Sure Start/Maternity Grant – 0800 169 0140

Tax Credit Helpline – 0345 300 3900

+ Bereavement support

Bereavement Advice Service

Helpline available for anyone affected by the death of someone significant to them.

  • Call 08002 585 944

Blue Cross for Pets

For people in distress due to the death, loss or separation of their pet. Pet Bereavement Support Service continues to be provided as usual, as our teams are home-based. Trained volunteer listeners are available by phone or email for anyone who wishes to speak to an understanding person about pet loss. Helpline is confidential and available to anyone experiencing pet loss, whether they are pet owners, veterinary staff or workers at animal organisations who need support at this time.

  • Call 0800 096 6606
  • Freephone lines are open 8.30am-8.30pm, seven days a week

Child Bereavement UK

  • Call 0800 288 840

The Compassionate Friends

For bereaved parents and families, offering support after the death of a child.

  • Call 034451 232 304

Cruse Bereavement Care

National helpline is staffed by trained bereavement volunteers who offer emotional support to anyone affected by bereavement. If you get an answer machine it's due to all the phone lines being busy. Please leave a message with your contact details and they will call you back.

  • Call 0808 808 1677
  • Freephone lines are open 9.30am-5pm Monday-Friday (excluding Bank Holidays) with extended opening hours until 8pm operating on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings
  • Language line is also available

The Deceased Preference Service

Help stop post being sent to your loved one.

  • Call 03300 450 212

Friends Together

Email info@friendstogetherbs.org

Friend

Support for LGBT people expecting or experiencing bereavement and also for their families and friends.

Holding On Letting Go

Email caroline.ford@holg.org.uk

Jigsaw South East

Email info@jigsawsoutheast.org.uk.

Pilgrims Stepping Stones

We are able to offer a 30 minute support call and one follow up call of 30 minutes should this be required.

Slideaway

Email slideawayone@aol.com

Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide

Helpline is still operating and provides an opportunity to talk confidentially with someone who has been bereaved by suicide and to know that you are not alone in your experience. For those aged 18 and above.

  • Call 0300 111 5065
  • Phone lines are open 9am-9pm Monday-Friday with some weekend hours covered during the Coronavirus pandemic (calls from landlines cost no more than a normal national call)

Tell Us Once

Inform relevant government departments and Local Authorities when someone has died.

Widowed and Young (WAY)

Support for men and women under 50.

Winston's Wish

Supports bereaved children, young people, their families, and the professionals who support them. In order to protect staff, their helpline is currently operating a remote service. Please leave a message on their voicemail with your first name and a contact number (including area code) and a helpline practitioner will call you back from a withheld number as soon as possible.

  • Call 0808 802 0021 or text 'WW' to 85258
  • Freephone lines are open 9am-5pm Monday-Friday whilst the text service is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week

+ Brain injury support

Headway

Helpline will remain open to anyone who requires support or information about brain injury. The team cannot answer medical questions about the virus and won’t be able to offer advice on any symptoms related to it, but they can offer reassurance and a friendly voice.

  • Call 0808 800 2244
  • Freephone lines are open 9am-5pm Monday-Friday but you can leave an answerphone message at any time

+ Cancer support

Macmillan Support Line

Cancer information and support specialists offering a listening ear. Can talk about whatever matters to you. Can also offer guidance and help you find the right information and support in your area. If you need to talk, they'll listen.

  • Call 0808 808 0000
  • Freephone lines are open 9am-5pm, seven days a week

+ Carers support

Carers Support East Kent

  • Call 0300 302 0178
  • Phone lines are open 8.30am-6pm Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays; and 9am-5pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Closed on bank holidays.

+ Counselling service

Ashford Counselling Service

  • Call 01233 610083
  • Phone lines are open between 8.30am-11.30am. Leave a message and they will be in touch within two days.

Kooth

For young people aged 10-16. Text based chats that are safe and anonymous.

+ Coronavirus advice

Young Minds

Advice and guidance for young people and their concerns with specific Coronavirus information.

  • Young people or parents can call 0808 802 5544
  • Text 'YM' to 85258

+ Dementia support

Dementia Connect Support Line

Hosted by the national Alzheimer's Society, offering information, advice and support for people living with dementia and their families. Dementia advisers will listen and give you the support and advice you need, including Coronavirus advice, connecting you to the help you need.

  • Call 0333 150 3456
  • Phone lines are open 9am-8pm Monday-Wednesday, 9am-5pm Thursday and Friday, and 10am-4pm on weekends. Calls are charged at local standard rate.
  • For interpreting services, call 0300 222 1122 and say the English word for the language you would like to use. You will need to give your name and number in English and an interpreter should call you back within five minutes.

Kent Dementia Helpline

  • Call 0800 500 3014

+ Emotional support

Victim Support

Independent line from the police.

  • Call 0808 168 9111
  • Phone lines are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week

+ Financial advice

Ashford Citizens Advice Bureau

Free and impartial advice on a range of issues.

  • Call 01233 626185

Kent Support and Assistance Service

Short term help and support with food and utilities.

Money Advice Service

Free and impartial money advice service.

  • Call 0300 500 5000

National Debt Line

  • Call 0808 808 4000

Step Change

Debt advice services.

  • Call 0800 138 1111

Turn2Us

National charity providing financial support if you meet the criteria.

  • Call 0808 802 2000

+ Health and wellbeing

Forward Trust/East Kent Community Drug and Alcohol Service

Helping people who have problems with drugs and alcohol and are based in East Kent. 

One You

General wellbeing and help with physical activity, eating well and drinking less.

+ Healthcare

Help to Care app

Free NHS healthcare app. Download from your relevant app store.

+ Homelessness support

Porchlight

Help for vulnerable adults who are rough sleeping, homeless, at risk of becoming of homeless, or impacted by homelessness.

  • Call 01227 760 078 or 0800 5677699

Shelter

Online advice only relating to housing issues.

+ Sexual health support

National Sexual Health Helpline

If you would like to talk to someone about a sexual health issue, you can call the National Sexual Health Helpline. Your call will be treated with sensitivity and in strict confidence.

  • Call 0300 123 7123
  • Freephone lines are open 9am-10pm Monday-Friday and 11am-4pm on weekends. Please note the helpline is closed on Bank Holidays.

Terence Higgins Trust

The UK's leading HIV and sexual health charity. Supporting people living with HIV, and helping the people using our services to achieve good sexual health. Our helpline is called THT Direct and offers support advice and information.

  • Call 0808 802 1221
  • Freephone lines are open 10am-6pm Monday-Friday

+ Sexuality/gender support

Switchboard LGBT Helpline

  • Call 0300 330 0630
  • Phone lines are open every day from 10am-10pm

+ Support line

The National Prisoners' Families Helpline

Support if you have a family member in the criminal justice system.

  • Call 0808 808 2003
  • Phone lines are open 9am-8pm Monday-Friday and 10am-3pm on weekends. Closed on bank holidays.

+ Utilities support

British Gas Energy Trust

Provides help with energy bills. You do not need to be British Gas customer to get in touch.

  • Call 01733 421021

EDF Energy Trust

Help for EDF customers only.

  • Call 01733 421060

+ Vision impairment support

Kent Association for the Blind

For help with food and medication.

  • Call 01622 691357