Urgent Telephone 4pm - 8.30am : 01233 331111

Support from other agencies, community groups and charities

Ashford Youth Hub – supporting young people and their families 

Ashford Youth Hub, Mabledon Avenue provides a safe, warm space for young people aged 8-19 (up to 25 with SEND) with trained, dedicated youth workers to listen and support them.  The youth hub also supports the whole family - they are able to distribute food parcels, for families with children living at home.  To request a parcel, contact them on 03000 417567. 

If you need advice or support around parenting, making an Early Help referral, children or young people with SEND, Domestic Abuse – please contact them to request a ‘District Conversation’ by emailing AshfordEarlyHelp@kent.gov.uk

Ashford Children’s Centres work in a similar way but supporting families with children up to age 7.   

Their buildings are welcoming and warm, and they are hoping to offer even more ways to support local families through the ‘cost of living’ crisis.  Keep in touch with the Youth Hub and Children’s Centres to find out more.  

Ashford Volunteer Centre is here to help  

Many voluntary organisations in the borough have a shortage of volunteers so they can't help as many people as they would like to. If people want to volunteer, they can:  

If voluntary organisations are struggling with the cost of living they should get in touch with AVC who can support them. Visit the Ashford Volunteer Centre website or call their helpline on 0808 802 8080.

Carers' Support East Kent  

Carers’ Support East Kent is a charity that provides Carers with the information and support they need. Their services are available to people who look after a relative or friend, who due to physical or mental illness, age related difficulties, disability, or an addiction, cannot manage without their support. Visit Carers' Support East Kent website.


Disability Assist  

Provides services that are developed and shaped by people with lived experience of disability.

  • Information, guidance, and advice
  • Peer support
  • Advocacy
  • Benefits support  

Visit the Disability Assist website or call 01233 633187.

Free School Meals

If your child is under 19 and in full-time education, and you receive certain benefits, you may be able to get free school meals for them. Check eligibility and apply online.

Healthy Start Food Vouchers

If you have a child under four, and meet the eligibility criteria, you may be entitled to healthy start food vouchers. Find out how to apply.

Royal British Legion Grant  

The Royal British Legion has launched a grant scheme for veterans and their families who are struggling to pay their energy bills. The initiative will provide non-repayable emergency grants of up to £2,400 a year (£200 a month) and is available across the UK. Visit the Royal British Legion site to check eligibility.

Kent Libraries  

Kent Libraries are providing warm welcome spaces this autumn and winter. They offer comfortable spaces, free offers, services and work with partner organisations and community groups. Visit the Kent Libraries Cost of Living Support webpage.

Riverside Warm Space

The Riverside Centre, part of Gateway Church, is offering a warm space on Mondays to Fridays from 9.30am to 3.30pm. The lounge is open to all with sofas, TV, games and free refreshments. The Riverside Centre, Ashford TN23 4YN.

Visit their website - Riverside Centre Ashford.

Chew the Fat…   

“It isn't a counselling service and no advice is given, but what we do well is listen. There’s no judgement, it is confidential to those in the room, it is free and no pre-booking required. There is a lot of laughter too.”   

That’s how Pete Bailey describes Chew the Fat, a group to help men chat that he started in February.    

“I started it as I have personally had anxiety for years. I never had an outlet to talk openly about it and felt embarrassed. Then from listening to workmates, in a male-dominated environment and hearing their stories, I realised that many men feel the same but felt ashamed to admit it.    

“Nearly 200 men have attended, with 35 being regular members. I understand it’s not for everyone, but come and check it out. You can talk about how you feel, what is happening in your life or just sit and listen. The hardest part is walking through the door but a warm welcome and cuppa awaits on the other side.”   

Chew the fat meets every Wednesday, 7-9pm, at Repton Connect Community Centre. Email chewthefatkent@gmail.com or search Chew The Fat on Facebook.

Offers from Retailers

Please check with each retailer that this offer is available prior to purchase.

Asda Cafe - Kids eat for £1. No minimum spend required.

Co-Op - Timing of discounts vary by store. Items which expire that day tend to have a 50% discount. You have to wait until 8pm for 75% discounts.

Dobbies Garden Centre - Kids can eat for free at Dobbies with every adult main purchased. This includes the kid’s lunch menu or pick ‘n’ mix’ meal, plus a drink. Available daily from 12 noon.

Dunelm Pausa Cafe - Kids eat 'free' when an adult spends £4 in their café. Valid on weekdays only.

M&S - Final reductions are often 30 minutes to an hour before closing.

Timpson - Free dry cleaning for an interview outfit. For the unemployed only.


Stagecoach £2 bus fares

Stagecoach bus users in the south east can benefit from three months of bus fares of no more than £2 for a single journey as part of the Department for Transport’s new fares initiative.

All Stagecoach's local bus services across Kent and East Sussex will offer a maximum fare of just £2 for any single journey between 1 January and 31 March 2023.

The scheme means all adult and child single tickets on eligible routes will be capped at £2, with any single tickets previously cheaper than this remaining the same price. This nationwide scheme in England is running in addition to other local fare initiatives already in place which the company are delivering in partnership with County Councils.

For more information, visit Stagecoach's website.