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Financial assistance - coronavirus

Financial assistance available to support students impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Oxford is committed to assisting students who have faced disadvantage or disruption as a result of COVID-19.

Please note that the COVID-19 Assistance Fund scheme is now closed for the 2020/21 academic year and further details about the financial assistance available for the 2021/22 academic year will be published later in the summer.

What is the COVID-19 Assistance Fund (CAF)?

The CAF is a University-wide scheme designed to support students whose financial situation has been affected by the pandemic. The scheme is administered by colleges in conjunction with their own forms of support. This fund was previously known as the COVID-19 Hardship Fund (CHF).

The CAF provides grants of up to £5,000 to students whose finances have been negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic since they began their studies at Oxford. Students must be facing exceptional and unexpected financial need which has led to a shortfall in their finances that they are unable to meet through other sources. Applications to the Fund might relate to cancellation of external funding awards; significant loss of financial support from family or a partner; unplanned living costs and continuation charges for those students who need to extend their research programme, or other living or study-related costs for which funding is no longer available. Students who have to meet unexpected accommodation costs due to quarantine rules or self-isolation are also able to apply for assistance, where this has led to a shortfall in their finances. However, please note that students will not normally be eligible to seek support from the CAF upfront to enable them to return to Oxford.

The scheme is not able to meet all additional costs arising from COVID-19, only those necessary costs for which students are able to clearly demonstrate a genuine need. Similarly, the fund is not intended to support students whose situation has become financially unsustainable over the longer term and who would not have adequate funding in place for the remainder of their studies beyond any assistance which might be granted from the CAF (in conjunction with any other support available to them).

Please note that eligible students from the Department of Continuing Education should contact the Student Support Office ( in the department directly for information on the scheme.

How do I apply?

Applications are now closed for 2020/21 academic year.  If you are in financial difficulty, please contact your college hardship officer (or your department if you don’t have a college) for further advice and support during the Long Vacation. Details about the financial assistance available for the 2021/22 academic year for students impacted by the pandemic will be published later in the summer.

What other information is available?

A range of wider financial information, including details of schemes that can provide help for other reasons, is available on the Fees & Funding webpages.

For more general advice about coronavirus and its impacts on current Oxford students please refer to the student coronavirus advice information pages.