Since the beginning of the COVID-19 explosion, international students in Australia have been hit hard by the economic impacts of it. Many have lost their jobs with no perspective to return any time soon or are dealing with concerns about their future in the country.
Despite the Coronavirus support packages were announced by the government of Prime Minister Scott Morrison, international students were excluded from the majority of their assistance. This way, some states and territories started to take their own measures to help those who are suffering the most with the pandemic.
Have a look at the support for international students that it is being offered in QLD, NSW & VIC.
On 19 May, the Queensland Government announced a package relief for international students who are dealing with severe financial hardship as a result of COVID-19. A one-off payment of $500 will be offered to private VET and ELICOS students.
To be eligible for the assistance, the criteria are:
- The individual must be over 18.
- Hold an international student visa to study at a Queensland education and training provider.
- Currently enrolled at a CRICOS registered education provider in Queensland that it is not a university-based in or with a campus in Queensland, not TAFE Queensland, and not a primary or secondary school.
- Currently living in Queensland.
- Currently have $1500 or less in their bank account – with proof of transactions from 19 May 2020 onwards.
- Must have an Australian bank account.
The Queensland Government will open a portal where the students may apply for the assistance. The portal will remain open until the fundings are available and we encourage you to apply immediately if you need support. The information provided by the students must be true and accurate and the process of the transaction might take up to two weeks depending on the system.
University and TAFE Queensland students should contact their institutions since the Queensland Government will distribute funding to large education and training providers as well. You can check if your institution is on the list of package relief here.
More information about the assistance package for international students in Queensland can be found here.
NEW SOUTH WALES
So far, no support regarding money will be provided for international students in New South Wales. The NSW Government will offer short-term emergency accommodation for vulnerable international students.
The crisis accommodation will be limited to international student visa holders in genuine need, who meet all the following criteria:
- Have been evicted or are facing imminent eviction.
- Have evidence of being laid off employment.
- Have less than $1500 in savings and no other avenues of support.
The applications for accommodation are expected to open in the next weeks.
Also, international students are encouraged to call the NSW Government COVID-19 hotline (13 77 88) to receive free advice and information on medical, mental health, legal, and emergency support. The hotline is open 24/7.
To know more information about the New South Wales assistance for international students, click here.
The Victorian Government announced an international student emergency relief fund to help those who are facing financial issues due to COVID-19. A payment of up to $1100 will be made to eligible students. The package includes private vocational education and training providers, private higher education providers, and private English language schools/colleges.
The list of eligible education providers can be found here.
To be eligible to apply to the International Student Emergency Relief Fund (Stream Two), you must meet all the following eligibility criteria:
- You are an international student enrolled in a private tertiary education provider in Victoria, and you were enrolled on or before 16 March 2020.
- You are an international student who has a current student visa that expires after 30 June 2020.
- You are an international student who currently resides in Victoria, Australia, and is presently physically located in Victoria.
- You were employed in Victoria in March 2020, and have experienced exceptional circumstances of financial hardship due to the Coronavirus pandemic, such as reduction of hours and loss of jobs.
The applications are now open and you will need to provide information and evidence to show that you meet the eligibility criteria.
To read more about the assistance for international students in Victoria, click here.
Besides, if you need any specific help, you can contact the Australian Government’s official resource for international students through their website.