Trusts and charities

There are many trusts and charities which offer aid and assistance to students in financial difficulty. Eligibility criteria can be quite specific and may include:

  • the subject or course you are studying
  • your personal circumstances (for example, disability or gender)
  • where you live or have been brought up
  • your family or parental circumstances or occupation
  • your own current or past occupation
  • a combination of the above.

It is important that you investigate every possible source of funding, and that you are aware of the application deadlines and eligibility criteria.

Please be aware that applying to trusts and charities can be a time-consuming process and requires patience and perseverance. Also, it rarely offers an immediate source of assistance. You are urged to seek advice from the Student Financial Support Service, if your needs are more immediate.

Please make sure you fulfil the trust's or charity's basic criteria before make your application. A successful application requires a few things to come together well. Here are a few steps you can check to ensure your application is successful:

  • check you meet the criteria of the funder
  • fill out the application form correctly
  • be clear in your supporting statements and make it explicit that your circumstances match their required criteria, especially if you fit within one of their stated priority target groups
  • provide all the necessary supporting information and evidence.

The Careers Service has produced a guide called Marketing Yourself in Writing PDF icon which you may find helpful.

Standard lists of educational trusts and charities can be found in most public libraries. Useful publications include:

  • The Charities Digest
  • The Directory of Grant Making Trusts
  • The Educational Grants Directory
  • The Grants Register.

The following links may also be useful in your search:

If you have a question about educational trusts and charities, please contact the Student Financial Support Service on +44 (0)115 848 2494 or by email.