If you’re more than 10 weeks pregnant or have a child under 4 years old, you may be entitled to get help to buy healthy food and milk.
If you qualify, you’ll be sent a Healthy Start card with money on it that you can use in certain UK shops. We’ll add your benefit onto this card every four weeks.
You can use your card to buy:
- plain liquid cow’s milk
- fresh, frozen and tinned fruit and vegetables
- fresh, dried and tinned pulses
- infant formula milk based on cow’s milk.
If you qualify, you'll get:
- £4.25 each week of your pregnancy from the 10th week
- £8.50 each week for children from birth to 1 year old
- £4.25 each week for children between 1 and 4 years old.
Please note, the money will stop when your child is 4 years old or if you no longer receive benefits.
You can also use your card to collect Healthy Start vitamins – these support you during pregnancy and breastfeeding, and vitamin drops for babies and young children – these are suitable from birth to 4 years old.
Local support if you don't qualify
The Derby Food 4 Thought Alliance supports people in Derby who are experiencing food poverty, through food provision, education, and advice. If you need assistance, telephone 01332 640000 - they can provide you with a range of support including an emergency food package.
The Derby Food 4 Thought Alliance is supported by Community Action Derby and proud to be part of The Derby Community Hub - a multi-sector partnership that includes Derby City Council. Community Action Derby is always looking for volunteers to help with all kinds of tasks. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you get Universal Credit, you can apply online if:
- you’re at least 10 weeks pregnant or have at least one child under 4 years old
- your family’s monthly ‘take-home pay for this period’ is £408 or less from employment.
If you get Child Tax Credit, you can apply online if:
- you have at least one child under 4 years old
- your family’s annual income is £16,190 or less.
If you receive Universal Credit or Child Tax Credit, apply on the Healthy Start website.
You will need:
- date of birth
- National Insurance number
- baby’s due date (if you’re pregnant)
- benefit award letter if you’re over 18 (you must enter the same information that’s on this letter).
If you need help, contact your children’s centre.
You can apply by email or phone if you’re at least 10 weeks pregnant, or have at least one child under 4 years old and get either:
- Income Support
- income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Pension Credit (which includes the child addition)
- Working Tax Credit run-on (paid for 4 weeks if your working hours, or your partner or carer’s, go to less than 16 hours per week)
You can also apply by email or phone if you’re at least 10 weeks pregnant and either:
- under 18 years old and not getting any benefits
- getting Child Tax Credits and your family’s annual income is £16,190 or less
- getting income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).
To apply, email email@example.com or telephone 0300 330 7010. Phone lines are open 8am to 6pm Monday to Friday (except public holidays).
If you need help, please contact your children’s centre.