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Financial assistance and wellbeing support for international students


The IDP Emergency Financial Assistance is developed to support existing IDP students experiencing temporary financial hardship and serves to help with day-to-day urgent needs. Under this scheme, Supermarket gift-cards are available up to the value of $200 to eligible applicants.

Help is available for International students who are experiencing financial hardship. You may be eligible for general bursary support, fee waivers, food assistance, and employment so we have compiled a list of universities and organisations and links to their websites to help you get in touch quickly and get the support you need.

Watch this space as we will be adding information as we receive them.


Victorian Government

International students will receive a relief payment of up to $1,100 as part of a Victorian Government emergency support package that will help tens of thousands of people across the state.

In addition, more than 150,000 international students currently living in Victoria are also eligible for the Victorian Government’s rent relief program, including subsidies of up to $2,000, and those legally allowed to work in Victoria are eligible for the Working for Victoria initiative, which helps people who have lost their jobs to find new employment.

Deakin University

Deakin has developed a support scheme for students in need. Support options range from financial help to other relevant support such as fee extensions.

Federation University

Federation University will provide special financial assistance for eligible international higher education students impacted by coronavirus. Assistance may include:

  • weekly assistance of up to $300 each (for up to five weeks)

  • funding for computer and/or technology assistance for students who are unable to study remotely

  • FedLiving accommodation assistance

  • student tuition Fee due-date extensions 

La Trobe University

La Trobe University COVID-19 Financial Assistance Program is available to current students in exceptional circumstances struggling with the costs of living and accessing technologies required to study online. 

Two sources of support are available:

  • Technology Bursary* – provision of a laptop and/or $150 to support students who do not have access to computers or internet at home

  • Crisis Support Bursary – one-off, $3000 payment for individual students experiencing significant financial crisis and housing insecurity

Students may apply for both bursaries.

Monash University

Monash University announced a $15 million Student Compassionate and Hardship package for students suffering financial hardship. Eligible students can apply in two stages: 

  • a $500 immediate emergency payment and

  • payment of up to $7000 after April 14

This package will be available to any eligible students, including undergraduate and postgraduate - both coursework and higher degree research - who have been adversely affected by COVID-19.

RMIT University

RMIT’s Student Hardship Assistance and Equity Scholarship funds offer up to $10 million in support to students impacted by COVID-19.

There are two types of financial assistance from RMIT:

Emergency Financial Grant

  • to support students who are impacted by job loss, housing insecurity or other financial matters associated with COVID-19. This is for non-tech expenses, such as essential living expenses, textbooks, accommodation, healthcare, or food

Technology Grant

  • to help students access essential IT equipment to continue studying remotely, including hardware, software, subscriptions, data, internet and digital materials. The Technology Grant is limited to up to $1,000 per student

Swinburne University of Technology

Swinburne has established the Swinburne Student Emergency Fund to support all current Swinburne students who have been impacted by an emergency such as a bushfire, drought or health pandemic. The fund will enable impacted students to access financial support through a one-off grant of up to $1,000.

The University of Melbourne 

They have introduced: 

  • a new needs-based COVID-19 Emergency Support Fund to provide relief and support for students who are experiencing financial hardship as a result of COVID-19

  • Student Support Grants (COVID-19) to help students with unanticipated expenses incurred as a result of COVID-19 travel restrictions

Working for Victoria

An initiative that is part of the Victorian Government’s $1.7 billion Economic Survival Package. It is designed to connect workers with new opportunities that will help our community and contribute to Victoria’s ability to respond to the pandemic.

If you have Australian working rights, you’re invited to register your details on the Working for Victoria site to access job opportunities.

The International Student Legal Information

A free legal information resource is available for international students living in Victoria. Written by community lawyers with the help of international students living in Victoria, this resource helps you learn about the people and services that can help you.


The University of Sydney

The University of Sydney offers financial support and has several bursaries and interest-free loans to assist with essential study and living costs. 


UTS has set up a $10-million International Student Hardship Fund to assist impacted students who are affected by the COVID-19 travel restrictions and who remains enrolled at UTS post census date for Autumn session 2020 and not on a Leave of Absence.

The University has defined specific categories and maximum claim amounts. They include:

  • additional accommodation costs

  • self-Isolation costs

  • flight changes costs

  • additional IT costs

Macquarie University

Macquarie University is offering a support package that includes the COVID- 19 Financial Assistance Grant and COVID-19 Financial Assistance Loan that offers up to $2,000 for students who need help to support themselves for the next few weeks.

Western Sydney University

International students are eligible to apply for COVID-19 Financial Hardship Support if they can show that their basic living needs and their continued study may be at risk due to current financial hardship. This financial support is designed to assist with food and other essential groceries.

University of New England

Funding is offered by the University to support quick response grants for UNE students experiencing financial hardship impacting their ability to continue their academic studies (course program or research) at the University.

Examples of what may be funded through the Student Emergency Assistance Fund - COVID19 include:

  • assistance with the costs of food and household essentials if your income has been affected as a result of COVID-19 (eg. Job loss, reduced hours at work etc.)

  • assistance with costs of unexpectedly studying online e.g. loan of a laptop, mobile data if no Wi-Fi is available at home;

  • travel and transit accommodation costs for college students who are unexpectedly having to return to the family Residence home due to a logistical need (e.g. interstate home) or the need to return to self-isolate, or carer responsibilities related to COVID 19

University of Wollongong

UOW has started the COVID-19 Financial Assistance Grant Scheme for international students most impacted by coronavirus, enrolled at any one of UOW's Australian based campuses, including UOW College Australia.

Onshore students seeking financial assistance can apply online from 8 April. Students will be assessed on a case-by-case basis

University of Newcastle

The University has established a Student Hardship Fund to support students facing hardship through $500 hardship grants and $750 laptop grants.

Study NSW

Study NSW has prepared a list of resources in their International Student Welfare Services Hub to assist international students to receive support during the COVID-19 pandemic.

International Student Legal Service NSW

If you need legal support, Redfern Legal Centre offers a free, state-wide legal service for international students in NSW. This is funded by Study NSW.


Griffith University

Griffith has so far committed $2 million to the Griffith COVID-19 Student Support Bursary for students suffering financial hardship affecting their ability to study online. Please find all their COVID Student Support for current students here.

University of Sunshine Coast

USC offers emergency bursaries to assist students currently enrolled in TPP, Undergraduate, Postgraduate, and Research programs (all study areas) experiencing unexpected financial hardship. Hurry, applications close on 19 April.

University of Southern Queensland

USQ established the COVID-19 Student Support Package to support students to continue their studies. All USQ students will be able to access this package, which includes changes to grades and further flexibility with assignment due dates, a comprehensive suite of financial supports and further enhancements to online support services.

Study Queensland

Queensland offers a range of resources including the Queensland student hub network, an international student hotline and student support staff dedicated to supporting and encouraging students.

Queensland Government

Queensland International Student Crisis Assistance Package 

The Queensland Government has more than tripled its support for students, boosting its state-wide international education assistance and recovery package to $15 million.  

As part of this package, an additional $10 million will now be made available to support international students experiencing severe financial hardship as a result of COVID-19. 

Currently, the Queensland Government is working on a process to distribute: 

  • Additional funding to Queensland-based universities and TAFE Queensland to top-up their bursaries and student support services 

  • One-off payments to private VET and ELICOS students

More details on the package can be found here

Job finder

Queenslanders whose employment has been impacted by COVID-19 and are now looking for work, can register their details, location and skills to be matched with suitable job opportunities by professional recruitment agencies. Register now.

Fee waivers

School fee waivers are available for dependant students of temporary visa holders that are enrolled in the Dependant Student Program and are experiencing financial hardship due to exceptional circumstances (e.g. death or serious illness of the main income earner).

Indian community in Brisbane

The city's generous and caring Indian community have come forward to donate essential groceries at a park bench for international students after a call-out on social media.

Anyone interested in helping international students in Brisbane can email kishan.m.vyas@gmail.com.


University of Western Australia

A new COVID-19 Financial Hardship Grant is available to provide immediate support to eligible onshore students who continue their studies with UWA and who are assessed as demonstrating significant financial hardship. 

Curtin University

Get in touch with Curtin Connect or our Student Assist team as a range of support, namely financial, academic, technology, wellbeing and visa are available to help you.

Edith Cowan University

ECU offers a wide range of support programs for students, and in response to the COVID-19 situation, more services are being added to assist students. ECU has put in place a $2 million Student Support Package.

Study Perth

StudyPerth has established the StudyPerth Crisis Relief (SPCR), a program to address the acute needs of international students affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and associated restrictions.

The program is to be funded by diverting StudyPerth resources from curtailed or cancelled projects. The SPCR will be accessible, via application, to provide support services to international students in acute need with regard to:

  • food

  • shelter

  • rights and support

  • health and wellbeing


University of South Australia

UniSA has established a $10m Student Hardship Fund (COVID-19), which is open to international students currently enrolled for onshore study at UniSA, who are in financial crisis and struggling with the costs of living and studying as a result of COVID-19.

The University of Adelaide

In partnership with the Adelaide University Union and student representatives, the university has designed a targeted Student Support Package to meet their students' needs.

There are three key aspects of the Student Support Package:

  • academic support

  • wellbeing plan

  • emergency financial support

Flinders University

The university is offering a $12.5 million Flinders Student Support Package. It offers a range of support for students, including $1 million in emergency support payments, of up to $500, made available to students through FUSA.

The South Australian Government

The South Australian Government has announced a $13.8 million International Student Support Package for students in Adelaide affected by COVID-19.

Designed to help international students currently residing in South Australia and facing financial hardship, there are three components to the package:

  • The South Australian Government, in partnership with the state’s three public universities, will match funding to alleviate student hardship as a result of COVID-19. The funding will be distributed between Flinders University, The University of Adelaide and the University of South Australia to distribute to their pathway and international students.

  • A $500 emergency cash grant will be available to other international students not studying at one of the public universities, currently enrolled in a course, living in Adelaide and who meet the criteria.

  • For school students living with South Australian families, a one-off $200 COVID-19 assistance payment per student will be provided to homestay families, to help support accommodation for school students.

Study Adelaide

Need a job? Study Adelaide has compiled a list of employers that are still hiring. View the list of employment opportunities in Adelaide or enhance your employability skills and knowledge of the Australian job market by joining one of the many employability webinars they have scheduled.


The University of Canberra

The University requests international students who are significantly impacted by the current situation to contact them by sending an email to welfare@canberra.edu.au. These cases will be handled individually, according to the needs of each student.

Australian National University

ANU is providing an additional $1million of funding to support students who need emergency financial support this semester. This is in addition to the emergency grants available through ANUSA and PARSA to support you if you're experiencing financial stress. The emergency grants cover:

  • accommodation

  • travel

  • grocery vouchers 

  • textbook/educational IT resources to support remote study

  • medical costs


Charles Darwin University

CDU offers the following support to students experiencing financial hardship as a direct result of COVID-19:


University of Tasmania

The Safety Net Grant Scheme (SNGS) is a University of Tasmania (UTAS) and Tasmania University Union (TUU) managed fund that aids eligible students experiencing exceptional and/or unexpected financial hardship. The grant is a one-off payment, not a loan.


The Australian Homestay Network

The Australian Homestay Network (AHN) has launched a new Australia wide program called the International Student Support Network (ISSN). This initiative provides short-term, heavily discounted homestay to eligible international students impacted by the global crisis.

Ask Izzy

If you need support, Ask Izzy can help you. 

They make easy to find the services you need. It's free and anonymous, and you can search over 360,000 services to find housing, meals, healthcare, counselling, legal advice, addiction treatment and more. Bonus - if you’re on the Telstra mobile network, you can access Ask Izzy even if you don’t have credit.

Have questions? We can help

Our team and counsellors are available through phone and digital channels to offer you a full suite of student placement services and support.

  • Call us at 1800 664 700 or arrange on-line consultations via Zoom, Skype, WhatsApp or phone with our friendly and highly skilled counsellors. Face-to-face appointments are not available temporarily. 

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