Durham University’s Covid-19 recovery fund opens for applications

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Durham University has opened applications for its Covid-19 Recovery Fund. The fund was created to provide urgent financial assistance for students, staff, and alumni who have been significantly affected by the pandemic.

The Recovery Fund is split into two separate bursaries: one for key workers and their dependents and another for those who have suffered financial hardship due to Covid-19. However, individuals can apply for both should they qualify.

The Key Worker bursary requires that applicants be either a key worker themselves, or a child of one, in order to qualify. Eligible applicants will receive a one-off £500 grant.

The Emergency Financial Hardship Fund is open to those with “a household income below £62,212” who are “able to demonstrate financial hardship due to Covid-19”. It also is opened to international students who have been unable to return to their home country during the pandemic. Successful applications will receive “£100 per month for eligible periods”.

Sutton Trust found that 30% of students are less likely to be able to afford study as a result of the pandemic.

Durham is not the only university to have set up a fund to support students financially affected by the pandemic. A number of universities including Oxford, Aberdeen, Plymouth and Cambridge offer similar schemes.

These funds come at a time of great uncertainty for students. A study by Sutton Trust found that 30% of students are less likely to be able to afford study as a result of the pandemic, with 34% of students reporting they have lost a job, had reduced hours, or not been paid for work completed.

The Durham Recovery Fund is also set to be open for researchers working in Covid-19 recovery fields, and 2020 graduates. However, full details about these two groups are yet to be published.

Applicants have until 30th September to apply and will be notified of the outcome by 30th October. Applications can be made on the university’s website.

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