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Benenden Charitable Trust

As an existing or former member of Benenden Health we may be able to help if you're experiencing financial hardship through a health or wellbeing issue.

Benenden Charitable Trust - a helping hand when life takes an unexpected turn

If you're experiencing financial difficulties or distress because of a health condition or an unexpected change in circumstances, we may be able to help you financially.

If you’re a Benenden Health member, you can call the 24/7 Mental Health Helpline for immediate emotional support in dealing with conditions like anxiety, depression, bereavement or relationship problems. If you’ve been a member for more than six months you may be able to access further Mental Health Support.

There's also a wide range of other organisations that support people with stress and anxiety. Here are a few that we hope you'll find useful:

If you're experiencing financial difficulties, there are a number of organisations which offer free advice and a range of money management tools to help you deal with debt and get back in control.

  • StepChange Debt Charity

    Debt Remedy Tool - this free and anonymous online tool will create a personal action plan, giving you the best ways to deal with your debt. It takes about 20 minutes to fill out, but you can stop and come back to it as many times as you wish.

  • National Debtline

    A free and impartial debt advice service which provides an online advice tool to help get back in control of your finances. You can also phone or email them for confidential advice.

  • Money Advice Service

    The Money Advice Service has lots of useful advice and tools. The Budget Planner is particularly helpful if you're just starting to tackle your debt.

  • Christians Against Poverty (CAP)

    A national charity specialising in debt counselling for people in financial difficulty, including those in need of bankruptcy or insolvency. CAP also provides Job Clubs for those seeking employment and Release Groups for people looking to overcome addictions and dependencies.

There are a number of online resources which can help you identify any State Benefits you may be entitled to

As well as considering what help we can provide, we will often also be able to direct you to other organisations because of where you've worked, where you live - or another aspect of your individual circumstances.

If you give us your consent, where appropriate we can work directly with a number of other charities to source additional financial support for you.

If you have any questions which haven't been answered, please use our enquiry form and one of our team will be in touch soon.

Alternatively, you can call us on 0800 414 8450 (8am-4pm Mon-Fri).

Assistance from Benenden Charitable Trust can come in a wide range of forms depending on the needs of the individual. The following stories highlight a number of ways in which we've responded to the needs of Benenden Health members who've found themselves in difficult circumstances because of ill health.

We're extremely grateful to the individuals featured in these videos for sharing their story and helping to bring the work of Benenden Charitable Trust to life.

We were formed at Benenden Health’s centenary conference in 2005 to help in situations where ill health results in financial hardship or distress.

Since then we've provided over £1.2 million in grants and have broadened the definition of when we can help to include non-health-related situations which might be impacting on someone’s wellbeing. These include relationship breakdown, redundancy and bereavement.

Benenden Charitable Trust exists to assist people who find themselves in ill health or financial difficulty when life takes an unexpected turn. Requests are considered on a case-by-case basis and grants are made to help with a variety of needs including:

  • Medical treatment not available through the NHS or Benenden Health membership (we will give consideration to whether the treatment is NICE approved).

  • Specialist equipment and disability aids including wheelchairs, mobility scooters, stairlifts, CPAP machines.

  • White goods, furniture and floor coverings.

  • Home adaptations and essential household repairs.

  • Short term care and assistance at home.

  • Help with short term childcare costs.

  • Respite care and short, recuperative breaks in the UK.

  • General financial help if you're struggling with everyday living costs.

The Charity is run by a small team of staff and overseen by a Board of Trustees.

  • Amanda Shaw – Charitable Trust Manager
  • Michelle Conyers – Charitable Trust Executive
  • Jane Abbott - Hospital Director
  • Cheryl Lythgoe - Society Matron and Head of Benenden Charitable Trust
  • Paula Clark - Benenden Health Board of Directors Trustee (Chair)
  • Celia Hadfield – Independent Trustee

We rely on the generous donations and fundraising efforts of our supporters to enable us to provide financial assistance grants in times of hardship and distress. The Benenden Healthcare Society Limited ('Benenden Health') makes an annual donation to cover the running costs of Benenden Charitable Trust, so 100% of the money we receive from individual donations and fundraising goes directly to help people in need.