COVID-19 Emergency Grant

Covid-19 Emergency Grant (CEG)

Purpose: The COVID-19 Emergency Grant aims to provide financial assistance to currently enrolled postgraduate student/s who are experiencing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 restrictions and government recommendations. Financial assistance is available to help students to meet the costs of living and current studying requirements during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Students whose CEG applications are successful may receive up to $1500 from PARSA to assist with the financial hardship; please note that the CEG payment is not a loan and does not need to be repaid.

Applications: Students interested in applying for the grant are advised to read the criteria and FAQs below prior.  The Student Assistance Team can be contacted via parsa.grants@anu.edu.au for any specific questions about requirements or eligibility.  Students are encouraged to complete the form online and to upload all required supporting documents at time of application.

Due to the current Campus closure, students are not able to submit their application in hard copy.

Incomplete applications will not be considered.

 

Eligibility criteria:

  • The applicant is currently enrolled as an ANU Postgraduate or Research Student;
  • The applicant can demonstrate  they are currently experiencing genuine financial hardship as a result of COVID-19 related restrictions or recommendations (e.g. online study requirement, loss of employment, inability to meet daily living costs; groceries, rent and utilities);
  • The applicant can demonstrate that they have an immediate need for financial assistance;
  • The applicant can provide 90 days of statements for all bank accounts in their name;
  • The applicant can provide supporting documentation for the requested amount i.e. lease, tenancy agreement, utility bills, medical bills/ prescriptions.  

 

Application review: A COVID-19 Grant application will be subject to a confidential review by a Student Assistance Team staff member as well as one member of the COVID-19 review committee; which is comprised of the PARSA Operations Manager, Director of Business Support, Director of the Student Assistance Team and the current PARSA Executive.  Successful applications are then processed through PARSA Finance.  Please note that all decisions are final.

If the application is successful, the approved amount will be transferred to the student’s bank account, or to an agreed-upon third party (e.g. medical bills, bond payments). Whenever possible, the funds will be transferred within three working days of the application submission.  If the application is not successful, the applicant will be notified in writing of the decision and an explanation of which part(s) of the criteria were not met.
 

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: Why has the grant amount been reduced from A$2500 to A$1500?

A: The intention of this new amount is two-fold. This round, we were given A$300 000 to deliver this program, in comparison to A$500 000 in the first round. With this lower funding allocation, we also had to lower the total grant amount in order to ensure we can reach more students in need. $1500 also reflects the average grant amount of CEG we have processed and approved since April 2020, meaning that most students did not request/require more than this amount. 

 

Q: I have applied for CEG before and my email stated that I have a remaining XX amount from my last application. Is that amount on top of the new $1500 allocation?

A: No. If you are a repeat applicant, all emails indicating a remaining grant amount for your application can not be considered. All new and repeat applicants will have the opportunity to apply for up to $1500 allocation for this new round. However, you must still fulfil all of the eligibility criteria. 

 

Q: I have applied for the CEG before and have used up the $2500, am I still eligible?

A: Yes, you will have the opportunity to apply for up to $1500 allocation. However, you must still meet our eligibility criteria to access these funds. 

 

Q: I have not applied for the CEG grant before, why can I only access $1500?

A: The previous amount of $2500 was not an entitlement, rather students could receive up to A$2500 based on their need. Students who applied for the grant program previously, had to meet the eligibility criteria and were not guaranteed to receive the full $2500.

 

Q: What does "financial hardship" mean?

A: It is important to note that financial hardship may look different for every individual. For example, financial hardship for a single adult vs a family unit may look very different and as such, each case is assessed on its own merits. Assessments are conducted by our Grant Assessors and will usually the following elements through the provision of supporting documents a) available funds b) income/supports c) expenses.

For instance, when someone does not have any income and is unable to pay for their living costs over the next 3-4 weeks, then that is an indication that they are experiencing immediate financial hardship. These circumstances can also be exaggerated when they do not have continuous support ie a scholarship or have lost their jobs/reduced hours at their jobs due to government restrictions and recommendations due to COVID-19.

 

Q: I am a student parent and I have increased childcare costs during the pandemic. Can I apply for the CEG?

A: Yes. We strongly encourage and welcome applications from student parents and carers. We acknowledge that student parents and carers face additional challenges and responsibilities that require additional financial support ie childcare, higher groceries bill and medication fees for dependents etc. You must still meet the eligibility criteria for the grant.

 

Q:  Can applicants use the same supporting documentation and reasons for a new application as in previous applications?

A: Yes, if the situation is still relevant.  However, we would require updated bank statements (90 days), bills, etc. If an applicant is claiming that lack of employment/inability to find a job as a reason of financial hardship, the Grant Assessors would require updated evidence of attempts to seek employment. We encourage you to provide supporting documentation for any claims that you make about your personal situation in your application.  If you are unsure about which documentation you need to provide, please reach out to our team for clarification. Incomplete applications may experience delays in processing.

 

Q: What does the CEG NOT provide for?

A: The CEG is not designed to pay for your tuition fees, visa extension fees, flight tickets, reimbursements for third country quarantine, or building up savings to buffer the long-term impact of COVID-19. However, if you have specific circumstances due to COVID-19 restrictions, please contact our Student Assistance Team to discuss your eligibility. 

 

Q: What costs can the CEG cover?

A: The CEG is available to help students meet the costs of living and current studying requirements during the COVID-19 pandemic. Costs of living can include upcoming rental expenses, utility bills, transport costs and groceries. Costs associated with studying requirements can include technological devices, such as tablets or laptops.

 

Q: Why is there only limited funding available to cover accommodation costs?

A: Our grants are designed to cover a gap in service provision. There are established bursaries through ANU that can provide medium to long term accommodation support for enrolled student at ANU. Therefore, our grant generally covers a period of 4 weeks accommodation support until you have accessed these medium to long term supports. We would only grant more than 4 weeks accommodation costs in exceptional circumstances.

Contact PARSA

PARSA Office
Level 2, Di Riddell Student Centre
Kambri Precinct
Australian National University
Canberra ACT 2601

Office Hours:

9:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday to Friday (except public holidays)
Call Us: +61 (02) 6125 4187
Write to Us: parsa@anu.edu.au