BBC Children in Need Emergency Essentials Programme

BBC Children in Need Emergency Essentials Programme supports children and young people who are facing exceptionally difficult circumstances, and is delivered by Family Fund Business Services. The programme provides items that meet a child’s most basic needs such as a bed to sleep in, a cooker to provide a hot meal and other items or services critical to a child’s wellbeing.

All applications must be made by a registered referrer.

Programme status update

The BBC Children in Need Emergency Essentials Programme has now reopened, operating as normal, and we aim to process applications within 10 working days.

As usual, please only contact us about an application if absolutely necessary, to prevent delays to that application being processed.

You can contact us via email (stating your application ID if possible) at or call us on 01904 550011 between 9:30am and 3:00pm, Monday to Friday.

Programme longevity- a tiered strategy

Please be aware there is now a tiered strategy in place to ensure we can achieve programme longevity and reach underrepresented areas again this year.

Each region or nation has a tier allocation, which may be subject to change, as the current funding year progresses.

We recommend that you read our tiered strategy guidance for referrers, to check for any changes to this tier allocation before making an application, or registering throughout the year.

Thank you for your support for this vital programme, to help us reach people most in need.


Who can we help?

  • Children and young people up to and including the age of 17 who are experiencing a crisis or emergency and live in the UK
  • We can only accept one application per household within a 12 month period

Who are we unable to help?

  • Adults aged 18 and over
  • Children and young people who do not live in the UK
  • Those who are leaving care who have access to separate, specific statutory provision
  • Children and young people who do not meet the residence criteria as defined by the programme

Please read our Emergency Essentials Referrer Guidelines for more details.

How we help

We can deliver or fund critical items such as:

  • Cookers
  • Furniture
  • Kitchen equipment and small appliances
  • Children’s beds and bedding (including cots)
  • Washing machines and tumble dryers
  • Fridges, freezers and fridge-freezers
  • Baby equipment
  • Clothing

How to apply

Applications must be completed by a registered referrer who is part of an organisation that is supporting the family or young person and capable of assessing their needs. The referrer’s organisation should also be able to administer and supervise the grant on our behalf.

Family Fund Business Services has to work within specific criteria whilst aiming to provide a flexible grant programme to assist those most in need. Please read our guidelines before applying.

Read our Emergency Essentials Referrer Guidelines

For more information, contact us via email (stating your application ID if possible) at or call us on 01904 550011, between 9.30am and 3.00pm, Monday to Friday.

Post award referrer responsibilities

Please be aware, if a successful award is made, referrers on the Programme can expect to be contacted by our audit department.

Referrer responsibilities in this area are as follows:

BACS/Voucher awards – Referrers will be asked to provide receipts detailing what items were purchased. Before the grant is administered it is important to ensure the beneficiary is fully aware that itemised receipts are needed for all purchases. Copies or photos of receipts are fine. We ask that referrers keep these receipts on file for 12 month after the award was made. This is part of the referrer obligations when making an application to the programme. If the referrer is unable to provide sufficient itemised receipts when requested, this could ultimately result in suspension from accessing this type of grant.

Direct delivery items (physical items from our network of suppliers) – Referrers will be asked to confirm that the item in question was delivered to the beneficiary. It is important to check the items have been delivered and keep a record of the contact/confirmation.

If you would like to send receipts to us before we request them please send in an email, with the application reference number to:

Please get in touch with the Partnerships team, if you have any further questions about our audit activity on the programme

Important documents