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Hardship Fund – The Warwick Hardship Fund for Full-time Undergraduates - Pre-Triage

The Warwick Hardship Fund (WHF) is a fund of last resort for Home students. Information about this fund, specifically relating to Full-time Undergraduates, can be found below.


What is the Warwick Hardship Fund (WHF)?

The WHF is intended to provide discretionary financial help to Home students in situations of unexpected short-term emergency which causes them difficulty in meeting their essential living costs and some course related costs (e.g., accommodation, childcare, transport, books, utilities etc).

  • The funds available are limited and cannot be used to help with tuition fee costs or to provide any high value, ongoing support.
  • Awards from the WHF are needs-related and are non-repayable.

Applications to the WHF can include those that are primarily for students seeking financial assistance with payment of their:

Some students will meet the eligibility criteria to receive the above funding automatically (but are still required to submit the relevant application form for each of these). However, some students will need to go through the full Hardship Fund process outlined below. Applications to the WHF for these purposes are treated in the same manner as applications to the WHF when a student is struggling to meet their essential living costs (i.e., these applications will be means-tested and awards are therefore not guaranteed). More information can be found in the relevant sections below.

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Am I eligible?

Registered Home students are eligible to submit an Expression of Interest in applying to the WHF.

As the WHF is a fund of last resort, students will need to show genuine financial hardship and that they have made every effort to meet their needs from any other available sources.

  • Students will also need to demonstrate that they have made adequate provision to fund themselves, prior to starting their course.
  • Students should have taken out their full entitlement of Maintenance Loan and Tuition Fee Loan from Student Finance.

Expression of Interest forms and WHF applications cannot be considered from students who have completed, permanently withdrawn from or abandoned their course. Further to this, certain enrolment and course exclusions apply, such as students who are awaiting exam board or students who are undertaking a degree apprenticeship. If you would like clarification whether your particular enrolment status or course excludes you from applying, please contact the student funding team at studentfunding at warwick dot ac dot uk

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How does the WHF process work?

Below you will find a flowchart which outlines the basic process of the WHF. This process is the same as the International Students' Emergency Fund (ISEF) for International and EU students.

WHF/ISEF

Hardship Fund assessments for Undergraduates, Medical Students and PGCE students do not usually consider providing support over the summer vacation period. If you require financial support during the summer vacation period, you will need to submit an Expression of Interest during the vacation period itself.

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How do I register my interest in applying to the WHF?

If you would like to apply to the WHF, then you will first need to complete and submit an Expression of Interest form. You will need to be logged in to your University account to complete this form.

Once your submission has been processed, if you are eligible to attend triage, you will receive an email with a link to book your triage appointment.

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What happens during my triage appointment?

Triage appointments last approximately 10-15 minutes and take place over Microsoft Teams. However, if you would prefer to attend a face-to-face appointment then please let us know via email (studentfunding at warwick dot ac dot uk) and we will try to accommodate your request.

During the appointment your Student Funding Adviser will ask you questions regarding:

  • How you are funding your course and living costs.
  • The value of your current available funds (e.g., across any overdraft facilities, bank, savings, trading and cryptocurrency accounts that you may have).
    • If you live with a partner, the Student Funding Adviser will also ask you about your partner’s available funds (e.g., across any overdraft facilities, bank, savings, trading and cryptocurrency accounts that they may have).
  • The value of your upcoming essential expenditure.
  • If there are any circumstances impacting your current financial situation.

You will not need to provide any evidence for your triage appointment.

Your triage appointment is used to determine whether it is appropriate for you to make a WHF application. If you are invited to apply, you will be advised on how to submit an application and what evidence you will be required to submit with this.

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What happens if I am invited to apply to the WHF?

If you are invited to apply to the WHF, you must submit your application within 4 weeks of receiving your invite. Any submissions made after this 4-week deadline will be rejected and you will need to re-attend a triage meeting. If you are a final year student, then your date of application submission must not be within 5 weeks of your course end date.

Once we have received your application form and supporting documentation, we will contact you to arrange a short, confidential appointment with a Student Funding Adviser.

  • Appointments take approximately 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  • Appointments are informal and will give you the opportunity to discuss your individual needs and circumstances in detail.
  • Appointments are conducted via Microsoft Teams.
    • However, if you would prefer to attend a face-to-face appointment then please let us know via email (studentfunding at warwick dot ac dot uk) and we will try to accommodate your request.
  • Once your appointment has been booked, you will receive a confirmation email with full details of your appointment.

Please be assured that your Student Funding Adviser will consider your best interests at all stages of the application and assessment process. However, you should be aware that all of our Student Funding Advisers work within guidance issued by the National Association of Student Money Advisers (NASMA) for the assessment of awards and distribution of funds.

It may be necessary during the interview to refer to your bank statements, credit history and spending patterns (and if applicable, it may be necessary to refer to your partners bank statements and evidence). The discussion may also explore opportunities for part-time working and other funding available. Any questions are not intended to be intrusive, but to allow your Student Funding Adviser to form a complete and comprehensive assessment of your financial situation and, if possible, to recommend a successful outcome to your application.

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What happens after my WHF appointment?

After your appointment, your Student Funding Advisor will create a report based on your appointment and assessment. This is then submitted to the Student Funding Manager for review and approval. The Student Funding Manager will also consider your best interests and works within NASMA guidelines for the assessment of awards and distribution of funds.

Providing we have received all your required documentation prior to your appointment, you will be notified of the outcome of your application via email within 10 working days.

  • If your application has been successful, any award will be paid within a further 10 working days from receipt of your outcome email (providing you following the instructions in the outcome email to submit your bank details promptly).
  • Please note, we can only make payment into UK bank accounts or some digital accounts.
  • We cannot make payments in cash.

Your outcome email will outline how your award will be paid. This may be paid as:

  • A one-off instalment directly into your bank account.
  • Multiple instalments directly into your bank account.
  • Credit to your University account for outstanding Emergency Loan(s).
  • Credit to your University account for Accommodation arrears.

If you have applied to the WHF for re-imbursement of your £200 DSA Equipment Contribution, and you are found to have an additional need on our standard assessment, you would be eligible for re-imbursement. This may be paid as:

  • A one-off instalment directly into your bank account.
    • This is the case for students who have paid the £200 DSA Equipment Contribution themselves in the first instance.
    • These students will be required to upload bank details for both the WHF and the £200 DSA Equipment Contribution fund separately. These students will be sent two different emails with instructions explaining how to do this.
  • Credit to your University account.
    • This is the case for students who requested that the University's Disability Team pay the £200 DSA Equipment Contribution on their behalf in the first instance.
    • These students would have had the £200 subsequently added to their University account as a debt to be repaid by the end of the academic year.
    • These students who are eligible for a £200 DSA Equipment Contribution re-imbursement, will have this re-imbursement credited to their University account to clear this debt.

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What help can I expect to receive?

Awards from the WHF are needs-related and assessed on an individual basis case by case basis. As a result, we are unable to give a clear indication of the likely value of any possible award until an application has been submitted and the assessment process completed.

  • There is no guarantee that funds will be awarded in every case and consequently, some applications will be unsuccessful.
  • Students who are eligible for an award from the WHF will not need to repay this.
  • Priority for funding is given to students with dependants, estranged students, care-experienced students and students with disabilities.

Please note that if your enrolment status changes during the application and assessment process then you may become ineligible to receive support from WHF (e.g., students who become permanently withdrawn).

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Are there any implications on my UK Government means-tested benefit(s)?

Awards from the WHF may have implications on your entitlement to UK Government means-tested benefits. If you receive an award from the WHF, you can request a document from the Student Funding Team to present to the relevant body explaining the circumstances of your award (including the amount).

UK Government means-tested benefits include (not exhaustive):  
  • Income Support
  • Council Tax Reduction
  • Income Based Job Seekers' Allowance
  • Working Tax Credit
  • Income Related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Pension Credit
  • Housing Benefit
  • Universal Credit

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How long does the application and assessment process take?

It can take up to 5 weeks from a fully completed application to receipt of funds, if you are found to be eligible (this time scale does not include from submission of your Expression of Interest only from submission of a fully completed WHF application).

If you are in need of more urgent financial assistance, we may be able to offer you an interest free Emergency Loan of up to £250.

Please see below further ways in which the wider University may be able to assist you, if you are in financial difficulty:

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Can I re-apply to the WHF?

You can submit a new Expression of Interest in applying to the WHF, if you find yourself in financial difficulty at a later date or if you have had a change in circumstances since your triage or application outcome. The process of re-application is the same as applying in the first instance and hence you will need to undertake all stages of this, as outlined in the previous sections.

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Is there any help offered by the Student Loans Company?

If you are in financial difficulty, you may wish to Contact the Student Loans Company (SLC) directly to see if there is any assistance that they can offer you.

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Other WHF Financial Assistance: Diagnostic Test Re-imbursement

Home students who have attended an appointment with one of the University's Disability Advisers and have subsequently undertaken (and paid for) a full diagnostic test, may be eligible for re-imbursement of their test.

Please see below for information on how to apply for re-imbursement of a diagnostic test, depending on your circumstances:

Full-time Undergraduates Diagnostic Test Flowchart

Students who receive the Warwick Bursary:

You should complete an Application for Diagnostic Test Re-imbursement within 3 months of your diagnostic test.

  • You will need to be logged into your University account to be able to complete the application form.

We will require the following evidence with your application:

  • A copy of your diagnostic test invoice. This must be on the test centre’s headed company paper and must clearly show the amount you have paid, as well as your name in full and the date of the test.
  • A copy of your Warwick ID card (which must be in date).

The maximum award that you would be eligible for via the Application for Diagnostic Test Re-imbursement is £350.

  • If you wish to apply for re-imbursement of over £350, please see the "Students who do not receive the Warwick Bursary or students who wish to apply for re-imbursement over £350" table below for information on how to apply.

Providing we have received all of your evidence, and we are able to confirm with the Disability Team that you have been advised to undertake a diagnostic test following screening with them, you will be notified of the outcome of your application via email within 10 working days.

  • If your application has been successful, any award will be paid within a further 10 working days from receipt of your outcome email (providing you following the instructions in the outcome email to submit your bank details promptly).
  • Please note, we can only make payment into UK bank accounts or some digital accounts.
  • We cannot make payments in cash.

Students who do not receive the Warwick Bursary or students who wish to apply for re-imbursement over £350:

As a full-time undergraduate who does not receive the Warwick Bursary (or a bursary recipient who wishes to apply for over £350), the process of applying for diagnostic re-imbursement is the same as applying to the WHF due to financial difficulty. Hence, you will need to undertake all stages of this process as outlined in the previous sections on this page.

  • If following your triage appointment, you are invited to submit an application to the WHF then you will need to supply all evidence requested of you (e.g., 3 months of bank statements) as well as the following:
    • A copy of your diagnostic test invoice. This must be on the test centre’s headed company paper and must clearly show the amount you have paid, as well as your name in full and the date of the test.
  • Your application will also need to have been submitted within 3 months of your diagnostic test

Applications (both via the Application for Diagnostic Test Re-imbursement and the WHF) cannot be considered from students who have completed, permanently withdrawn from or abandoned their course. Further to this, certain enrolment and course exclusions apply, such as students who are awaiting exam board or students who are undertaking a degree apprenticeship. If you would like clarification whether your particular enrolment status or course excludes you from applying, please contact the student funding team at studentfunding at warwick dot ac dot uk

As with all of our forms, we cannot process applications on non-working days (e.g., weekends, bank holidays, Christmas shutdown etc). 

If you are not sure whether you can submit an Application for Diagnostic Test Re-imbursement or whether you need to submit an Expression of Interest, please contact us on 024 7615 0096 or email studentfunding at warwick dot ac dot uk

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Other Financial Assistance: £200 Disabled Students' Allowance (DSA) Equipment Contribution

If you have been recommended to purchase a computer as part of your assessment for Disabled Students' Allowance (DSA), you will be required to pay £200 towards obtaining this. You may be eligible for financial assistance to help with this cost. For details on how to apply for financial assistance with this, please see the Disability Services £200 DSA Equipment Contribution page.

Please see below for an overview on how to apply for re-imbursement of a £200 DSA Equipment Contribution, depending on your circumstances:

£200 DSA Equipment Contribution Flowchart For Students who do not need to apply to the WHF

£200 DSA Equipment Contribution Flowchart For Students who need to apply to the WHF

You will need to be logged into your University account to submit an Online £200 DSA Equipment Contribution Application form.

You may also wish to view the following Disability Services pages:

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Who should I contact if I have any questions?

If you have any questions related to the WHF (including the Diagnostic Test Re-imbursement and/or £200 DSA Equipment Contribution) or Student Funding in general, please do not hesitate to contact the Student Funding team on studentfunding at warwick dot ac dot uk, or by telephone on 024 7615 0096. You can also view our Warwick Hardship Fund Guidance Notes for Full-Time Undergraduates, for further information.

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Useful Links/Forms:

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