The Irish singer was widowed in 2007 when her husband of 26 years, Brian Hudson, lost his battle with skin cancer, and she has admitted she was forced to rely on state handouts to survive.
Nolan recently joined British reality Tv show Celebrity Big Brother, and she has revealed the job threw her a financial lifeline.
She says, "If I won Big Brother obviously it will make my life easier and hopefully it will bring other big things (jobs)... (It will) make my life better - financially secure. I had benefits (welfare payments) for maybe two and half years or something just when it was too difficult...
"The worst thing of all was for me was to go on benefits. I felt a loser really... There was no greater pleasure than phoning up the benefits people (after landing the Celebrity Big Brother slot) and saying 'My circumstances have changed actually'. That was such a good feeling to know I have financial security for the first time in a very long time."