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Below is some useful information for you
Young people aged 19, who are estranged from their family are finding it difficult to pursue full-time education because they are unable to claim benefits.
Homelessness is a result of a number of unresolved problems which build up over time. Too often the choice for young people in this situation is to attend college / further education (increasing their employment opportunities in the future) OR have a place to live.
If you can study part-time, financial assistance can be available to you, although you will still need to be available for work or to take part in work experience schemes, which may mean giving uo the course.
If you want to study full time then there is no option to claim benefits to help support your living arrangements.
If you are not in further education you can claim Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) and housing benefit; that helps pay for you accommodation if you are homeless.
You can not claim benefits if you are 19 years old and in full time further education, unless you started your course before your 19th birthday.
The most financial support available to you is if you are aged 16 – 18 and continue your studies in a local further education college.
Not everybody is ready for further education at 16-18 years old, particularly if you are facing homelessness or are leaving care.
Ashley has been receiving support from GISDA for over a year and was currently in her second period with us - click here
“Jake” had enrolled on a full-time course at college with 6 months to go before qualifying as a bricklayer - click here
B was a care leaver and a tenant of a one bedroom flat where he lived alone, until August - click here
Tony ‘s Story
Tony had just turned 19 years old over the summer and had started a mechanics course in September - click here
Darren had been receiving support from GISDA for 3 years - click here
Full Time Students:
Most full-time Students are unable to claim income related benefits. You may be able to claim if:
• You are a single parent
• Have a partner who is also a student – and one or both of you are responsible for a child
• Have a disability, and qualify for the disability premiums or income-related Employment and Support Allowance.
• If your partner is not in education but are eligible for any income-related benefits, your partner can claim on behalf of you both.
Part time students can apply for income-related benefits if they’re on a low income and meet the certain conditions. Also may be able to receive job seekers allowance.
Access to Learning funds
Discretionary funding if you need extra support - click here
Discretionary Learning Grants:
Learning grant for between 16 – 19 years old - click here
Is available if you are 16+ and unable to work, if you are in full-time education you may not qualify for this support
You cannot claim housing benefit if you are in full time education
If you are 20+ years old Can get financial help with childcare costs if you are in college, school or a work-based learning programme from the Discretionary Support Fund (see above).
Students in Higher Education
• You can apply to help fund your studies if you are on a part-time course.
• Students who are 19 and over are eligible for the Assembly Learning Grant which does not cover support for specialist books, equipment, clothing and footwear or examination costs. It is dependent on whether or not you are able to claim certain income related benefits - click here
Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA)
• For students aged 16 – 18
• For 19+ there is no Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA) available (may be able to apply if you have not received EMA for 2 years) - click here
Assembly Learning Grants:
Available for students aged 19+ - click here
Local transport Services Grant
• Is available if you are 16 – 18 years old
• Or continuing on a course you started before you turned 19
Click here for more information