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Families and Young People

Find out more about targeted support for families and young people.

Education Maintenance Allowance

You could get financial support to stay on at school if you are from a low income household and meet certain criteria. This is called an Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA).

Find out more and see if you are eligible >>

Educational Trusts

There are various Trusts, Schemes and Scholarships available in the region.

  • John Wallace Trust Scheme
  • Edinburgh Dumfriesshire Scholarship
  • Wigtownshire Educational Trust
  • Lockerbie and Syracuse Trust
  • Dumfriesshire Educational Trust

Find out more and how you can apply >>

Family Hub 75 West

A positive and supportive Hub that is welcoming to children and families. Based in Stranraer, Hub 75 West is open seven days a week and offers a safe place for children and families to access group work, practical support and the potential to learn new skills.

Find out more and get involved >>

Family Support Service

The Family Support Service is a voluntary service that forms part of the wider children and families social work team at Dumfries and Galloway Council. 

The team aims to provide consistent, short-term support to families to help deal with any difficulties. They do this by looking at building resilience, offering advice and practical help. 

For more information about the Family Support Service, please contact Children and Families Social Work Services on 030 33 33 3001.

Free school meals

Free School Meals can lead to a large saving each year, parents of primary school children can potentially save £361 and parents of secondary pupils can potentially save £370.

Children who are eligible for free School Meals on financial grounds, also receive £2.50 per day holiday food payments for each of the main school holidays. This is around £162 per child per year.

Find out more about free school meals >>

Free school uniforms

Did you know that Dumfries and Galloway Council has six permanent School Uniform Banks in the region that are open all year round?

Each location has a extensive stock of free, excellent-to good-condition school uniforms that are suitable for the schools close to each uniform bank location.

Find a uniform bank near to you >>

Free school transport

Your child could get free school transport if their school is not within walking distance, you're on a low income or they have additional support needs.

Check if your child can get free school transport >>

Free warm winter clothes

There are free warm winter clothes events taking place across the region this winter season.

Find out where you can access free warm winter clothes >>

Period Dignity Project

Dumfries and Galloway Council provides a range of Free Period Products for collection at public venues and community organisations across our region.

Find out more >>


School clothing grants

Families on low income could get a school clothing grant. It's £134 for primary aged children and £150 for secondary aged children.

Check if you can get a school clothing grant >>

Scottish Welfare Fund Team

The Scottish Welfare Fund Team provides a safety net for vulnerable individuals and families on a low income within our communities. The fund is divided into two areas:

  • Crisis Grants - immediate funds for essential living costs
  • Community Care Grants - provision of household goods to help set up home or maintain a home

Find out more and apply online >>


Are you a student at Dumfries and Galloway College? Did you know they run a free breakfast club and have a student food bank and an emergency student support fund?

Find out more information on the support available >>

Young Persons' (under 22s) free bus travel

If you live in Scotland and are 5-21 years old you are eligible for a card giving you free bus travel. Children under five years old already travel for free on buses and don't need a card.

Find out more and apply now >>


Organisations and charities across Dumfries and Galloway have services that can help people with the cost-of-living increases .  Download the free DGLocator mobile app or access its website to easily search services available.

Apple download:
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or visit:

National Support

Baby Boxes

The Baby Box is packed full of clothes, bedding and lots of other useful things to help give your baby the best possible start in life.

Read more about Baby Boxes >>

Child Benefit

You can claim Child Benefit if you're responsible for bringing up a child who is:

  • Under 16
  • Under 20 if they stay in approved education or training

Only one person can get Child Benefit for a child.

It's paid every four weeks and there's no limit to how many children you can claim for.

Claim Child Benefit >>

Claim back childcare costs

You may be able to claim back up to 85% of your childcare costs if you're eligible for Universal Credit, with up to £950.92 back each month for one child or £1,630.15 for two or more children.

Find out more about claiming back childcare costs >>

Claim Healthy Start vouchers

If you're more than 10 weeks pregnant or have a child under 4, you may be able to get help to buy healthy food and milk.

Check if you're eligible for Healthy Start vouchers >>

Claiming Child Trust Funds

If you were born in the United Kingdom and you're aged 16 or over and your birthdayis not before 1st September 2002 then you're almost certain to have a Child Trust Fund - money put into a personal account for you by the Government, which could now be worth £1,000 or more. You can take control of it from your 16th birthday, before getting access to the money at 18.

If your parent or guardian/carer knows which account provider it's with, that's fine - no action is needed. But if they don't know where your account is then you can find out more by following the link below.

Find out more about Child Trust Fund Accounts >>

Free early learning and childcare

All three and four year olds (and some two year olds) in Scotland can get 1140 hours per year of funded early learning and childcare.

Check what childcare you're entitled to >>

Holiday activities and food programme

You can get access to free activities and food for your children in the holidays if they receive free school meals.

Contact your local Council to find out more >>

Social Security Scotland

Social Security Scotland works in partnership with Dumfries and Galloway Council, Dumfries and Galloway Citizens Advice Service and other organisations to reach and support as many families as possible. 

Even if you don't know if you would be eligible to receive any of the benefits listed below, please take the time to make contact with Social Security Scotland to check. It won't take long to find out if you would be eligible or not and the potential increase to your and your family's income could benefit you all for years to come.

  • Best Start Grant Pregnancy and Baby Payment - one-off payment of up to £707.25 from 24 weeks in pregnancy up until a baby turns six months for families who get certain benefits.
  • Best Start Grant Early Learning Payment - one-off payment of £294.70 when a child is between two and three years and six months for families who get certain benefits.
  • Best Start Grant School Age Payment - one-off payment of £294.70 when a child would normally start primary one for families who get certain benefits.
  • Best Start Foods - a pre-paid card from pregnancy up to when a child turns three for families on certain benefits to help buy healthy food.
  • Carer's Allowance Supplement - an automatic payment made twice a year to people who get Carer's Allowance through the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) on certain dates each year.
  • Funeral Support Payment - money towards the costs of a funeral for people on certain benefits who are responsible for paying for a funeral.
  • Job Start Payment - £294.70 for 16-to-24 year olds who have been on certain benefits for six months or more to help with the costs of starting a job.
  • Young Carer Grant - an annual payment of more than £359.65 for people 16, 17 or 18 who care for people who get a disability benefit from the DWP for an average of 16 hours a week or more.
  • Child Winter Heating Assistance - £235.70 payment to help families of a child on the highest rate care component of Disability Living Allowance - for children to heat their homes.
  • Scottish Child Payment - unique to Scotland, a benefit that gives qualifying parents and carers £80 every four weeks helps towards the cost of supporting your family. It's a weekly payment of 5 that you can get for every child you look after who's under 16 years of age.
  • Child Disability Payment - a payment providing extra money to help with the costs of caring for a child with a disability or ill-health condition. It replaces Disability Living Allowance for children in Scotland which was previously delivered by the Department for Work and Pensions.
  • Adult Disability Payment - a payment providing extra money to help people who have a long-term illness or a disability that affects their everyday life. It replaces the Personal Independence Payment for people in Scotland previously delivered by the Department for Work and Pensions.

Find out more about these benefits or apply for them >>

Students: Lone Parents' Childcare Grant

This grant is for students bringing up a child or sibling on their own to help with the cost of registered childcare.

Read more about the Lone Parents' Childcare Grant >>

Tax-free childcare

You can get up to £500 every three months (up to £2,000 a year) for each of your children to help with the cost of childcare.

Claim tax-free childcare >>

Universal Credit childcare costs

If you pay for childcare while you go to work, Universal Credit can pay some of your childcare costs.

Check if you can claim back childcare costs >>

Young Carer Grant

The grant is a yearly payment of £359.65 for young carers in Scotland. You need to be 16, 17 or 18 years old to get it.

Find our more about Young Carer Grant >>

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