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New bursary is ‘home sweet home’ for care leavers

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Students who have lived in care will feel more at home during their first year at the University of Northampton, thanks to a new housing bursary.

The Care Leavers Accommodation Award is open to 50 full-time undergraduate students who have been in care or under a care order.

Those who meet all of the eligibility criteria* can apply for a fully funded place for a whole year (52 weeks) across Waterside campus or in any other Halls of Residence, to help settle in during their first year.

This award can be applied for on top of the University’s existing Care Leavers/Foyer award which gives eligible students a £1,500 lump sum to put toward their studies.

Student Larrissa Simon is in the second year of her Education Studies degree and spent time in care herself: “I was put into care when I was 14 and found it really hard to cope. Fitting in was difficult as at school and college I felt marginalised from people.

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“Even though the University have been brilliantly supportive, coming here was that bit more awkward. I struggled to get the deposit for my accommodation as well as providing food for myself, once I’d moved in to student ‘digs’.

“That’s why the new accommodation scheme is such a great opportunity for care leavers. They will have less stress about making those big payments.

“I’m sure for a lot of care leavers money has played a major role in holding them back. This opportunity will allow them to enjoy the University even more!”

*Criteria for the award are:

  • You are beginning the first academic year of your course in 2020/2021
  • You are under the age of 25 on the first day of the first academic year of your course (1 September for courses starting in the autumn term)
  • You are a ‘Home’ student enrolled on a full-time undergraduate course at the University of Northampton. EU and International students are not eligible to apply for this award
  • You must have been in care, or under a care order, for a period of at least thirteen weeks since the age of 14 or you are from a Foyer. (You must provide a supporting letter from your Local Authority or support worker to confirm this)
  • You must not be living with parents or receiving any financial support from parents.
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