Healthy start for your child

Healthy Start Food Scheme

There are over 2000 eligible families in Newham who are missing out on payments to buy vegetables, fruit, legume/lentils/beans and milk.

*If you previously received Healthy Start paper vouchers, you must apply for the digital scheme. This is a new scheme and instead of receiving paper vouchers, you will receive a debit card. Money will be automatically added to this card every 4 weeks. If you have not reapplied for the digital scheme, you will no longer be receiving payments. Click here to reapply

What is the Healthy Start Scheme?

Pregnant people and families with children under the age of 4 may be eligible for help to buy healthy food and milk if they are on certain benefits.

Under 18 and pregnant will qualify even if they don’t receive any benefits.

For more information, please visit the healthy start website

Applying for the Healthy Start scheme does not affect benefits your family may be receiving.

What does Healthy Start provide?

Payments worth:

  • £4.25 per week for pregnant women (from 10th week of pregnancy)
  • £8.50 per week for babies from birth to 1 year old
  • £4.25 per week for children between 1 up to 4 years of age

You can find a full list of what you can buy on the NHS website. - Change to this link: What you should buy – Get help to buy food and milk (Healthy Start)

How to claim

Applying online

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

To apply, you’ll need your:

  • name
  • address
  • 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)

Apply online here.

Applying by email or phone

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)

You can apply by either:

If you’re not a British citizen but your child is

You might be eligible for Healthy Start depending on your immigration status.

You can get Healthy Start if all the following are true:

Your biometric residence permit (BRP) or your online immigration status (opens in a new tab) will say if you cannot claim public funds. You might also have a letter from the Home Office about it.

To apply for Healthy Start, ask for an application form via email. Only use this email address if you think you cannot claim public funds because of your immigration status.

Healthystartclaim@dhsc.gov.uk