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New grant bridges gap for 1000s of students

New grant will bridge the gap for thousands of student families

From today students with dependents who face financial hardship as they move from study to looking for work will be able to access additional help from StudyLink, the service of the Ministry of Social Development responsible for student financial support, says Social Services and Employment Minister Steve Maharey.

The new Student Allowance Transfer Grant will pay students with dependents in hardship a transitional payment during the stand down period between the end of their Student Allowance and the start of their benefit. The payment will be the same as the benefit they would have received if there had not been a stand down.

Steve Maharey said this new programme would help ease the transition from an Allowance to a benefit and alleviate hardship for the students and their families.

“Every year there are a large number of students that finish their study and require help with either income support or employment. This year we estimate that up to 3,700 students may be eligible for, and benefit from, the Student Allowance Transfer Grant.

“Funding of $5.1 million over four years was committed for the Student Allowance Transfer Grant in this year’s Budget, as one of a number of new Government initiatives designed to support students and make tertiary education more accessible,” Steve Maharey said.

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