Financial assistance and wellbeing support for international students
Help is available for International students who are experiencing financial hardship. You may be eligible for general financial support, travel, medical, 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.
New Zealand Government
International Student Hardship Fund
The New Zealand government has established a $1M hardship fund for international students to address urgent, temporary needs, for example temporary inability to access cash or because of reduced part-time employment.
They welcome applications from education providers and organisations to apply for grants of up to $20,000 (GST exclusive) to enable them to provide eligible international students with direct financial relief or other support, including food parcels and support towards living costs.
Applications can be made from 21 May until funding has been allocated.
Which organisations are eligible to apply to ENZ for grants?
Education providers who are signatories to the Code of Practice
Peak bodies, or
Other organisations who currently work with international students and have the mechanisms and experience to support international students with hardship requests.
Summary of eligible and ineligible students
A current fee-paying international student, or enrolled as an international student as at 23 March
International PhD students paying domestic fees
In genuine, temporary hardship
International students who are not currently enrolled or who were not enrolled as an international student as at 23 March
International students who are eligible for other government support
All students entitled to work in New Zealand (including international students) and who are employed by a New Zealand employer can be covered by the wage subsidy.
This translates to a direct payment of:
$585.80 for people working 20 hours or more per week (full-time rate)
$350.00 for people working less than 20 hours per week (part-time rate)
The payment is over a 12-week period. Companies are eligible if there have lost 30% decline in actual or predicted revenue.
Employment New Zealand
Get further information regarding your employment rights during the lock-down here or call 0800 20 90 20.
MoneyTalks is a helpline available to provide free, confidential advice. Their financial mentors can:
- understand your financial situation
- organise your debt
- plan for the future
- get you in touch with a local budgeting service
Visit the MoneyTalks website for more info.
We are aware that some students will be experiencing financial hardship and have concerns about managing expenses. You can speak to LUSA for advice and guidance. You can also apply to the hardship fund if you require monetary support.
The University of Auckland
The University of Auckland may be able to provide some short term financial support for those deemed to be in hardship to address the challenges below:
loss of or reduced hours in employment
issues in covering rent/halls accommodation fees/board/mortgage
inability to pay utility bills or cover grocery expenses
unforeseen costs in technology, equipment, or other added requirements for studying off-campus and/or online
To be eligible for this funding you need to:
be a currently enrolled student
be currently in New Zealand
demonstrate that you are in financial hardship as a result of the coronavirus outbreak (for example: bank statements or correspondence with employers)
Complete the Student Emergency Fund Application Form
AUSA Hardship Grant
The AUSA (Auckland University Student Association) Welfare Hardship Grants scheme helps students in hardship with the basic necessities of life. Financial need must fall under one of the following four categories to be considered: food, accommodation, travel or medical. You must also meet the grant criteria.
Visit AUSA Hardship Grant to apply
University of Otago
The University of Otago has announced the launch of a $1.5 million Pūtea Tautoko hardship fund to support their students facing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 global pandemic.
In addition to the $1.5 million committed by the University, Vice-Chancellor Professor Hayne is donating 20% of her salary for the next six months to the fund. University Council members are also donating 20% of their council fees for the next six months.
ALL students will be able to apply to the fund, whether they are New Zealand or international students, full-time or part-time, undergraduate or postgraduate. Applications for the fund open in early May. Stay tuned for more information.
Skinny Jump provide a low-cost prepaid broadband service for eligible Kiwi homes. 30GB of broadband is available for just $5. To find out if the service is available at your home address, visit the Skinny website.
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.
Join IDP Virtual Counselling and connect with our counsellors virtually
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.