Living Cost Support Fund

The Living Cost Support Fund has taken over from the Manchester Hardship Fund. Applications for the Fund are now open and will remain open until the 31st June 2020. For information on how to apply please see the application section below.

The Living Cost Support Fund is available to assist you to overcome financial hardship.

We understand that even with the best financial planning for your studies, you may experience something unforeseen that results in you struggling to meet your day to day living costs. Or you may have a disability or caring responsibilities which means you have additional costs to cover to enable you to study at university.

Please note it can take up to 4 weeks from receipt of supporting documents in order for a decision to be made regarding an application.


You must be registered on a full-time programme of study (or at least 60 credits if part time) to apply. In addition, you must:‌‌

Undergraduate UK/EU

  • Have taken your full entitlement of student loans/NHS Bursary

Postgraduate UK/EU

  • Be self-funding (not receiving a sponsorship or stipend) 
  • Have taken your full entitlement of student loans (if you are eligible for these)

Undergraduate & Postgraduate International Students

  • Be self-funding (not receiving a sponsorship or stipend)
  • Have a letter of support from your school, confirming they are aware of your difficulties and you are of good academic standing.

Architecture Students studying joint course with MMU

  • Home students are only eligible for funding from MMU, please click here to visit their website
  • EU/International students need to contact MMU to enquire about applying for their Access to Learning Fund (hardship fund). If deemed ineligible please email outlining your financial difficulties, applications will not be accepted without prior consent from a member of the funding team
  • All normal eligibility criteria apply, please review the guidelines document


The Living Cost Support Fund for 2019/20 academic year is now open. When the fund is open applications are made through a portal on MyManchester. To gain access to the portal please follow the link below:

Start Application for Living Cost Support Fund

Assessments and Awards

How much you could get depends on your individual circumstances therefore we cannot let you know if your application will be successful before we assess it, or how much you may be eligible for.

When assessing your application, we calculate awards following the Assessment Guidelines and also consider the following:

Did you fully consider the costs of studying before you started the course and have funding in place? There are amounts we expect you to have available to pay for essential living costs. You can read about these in the Assessment Guidelines.
Have you exhausted all other options of financial support? Are you applying to the fund as a last resort? This includes all statutory funding such as Student Loans and benefits, taking the full cash amount of the Manchester Bursary, PCDL, interest free student overdrafts, part-time work, money from family.
Is your available income enough to pay for your essential costs? We calculate your weekly income and weekly expenditure following the Assessment Guidelines.
If you have additional costs to enable you to study, have you submitted evidence of these? This could be travel costs associated with caring responsibilities, childcare costs, medical or health related costs such as prescriptions.
If you have experienced a change in circumstances, have you submitted evidence? This could be a letter from a doctor, counsellor, school officer or even a family member.
Is there evidence of ‘lifestyle’ or ‘non-essential’ expenditure on your bank statements? We can use our discretion to reduce awards or even reject applications if there is expenditure such as Sky/Virgin Media TV, holidays, gambling, shopping sprees, large phone bills or expensive single items such as iPods or laptops. We may reconsider your application if you seek budgeting advice.

Priority/Non-priority debts

A priority debt is where  ‘non-payment [of the debt] would give the creditor the right to deprive the debtor of his/her home, liberty, essential goods or services’. This includes rent/mortgage arrears, council tax arrears, Tax and VAT arrears, essential Hire Purchase goods and gas/electricity arrears. Other types of debt may be included if they are essential to individual circumstances, for example, debts to a childcare provider.

Non priority debts will not be included in the assessment. This includes non-secured loans, overdrafts and credit card payments. Students will be referred to the appropriate support services for debt management when it is apparent they are unable to cover essential living expenditure due to re-paying non priority debts. 

If you have questions or problems with the application process, please contact the Student Services Centre on 0161 275 5000 or email