On 29 April 2020, the Victorian Government announced a $45 million fund to support international students in Victoria facing hardship as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The fund is being delivered in partnership with Victoria’s tertiary education providers.

Our international students make a vital contribution to our education system, our economy – and our state. The Victorian Government is committed to ensuring that our international student community feels safe and supported during this difficult period.

International Student Emergency Relief Fund

The International Student Emergency Relief Fund will provide a payment of up to A$1,100 for vulnerable international students who have lost their job or had a significant reduction to their employment and are facing financial hardship as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19).

The fund complements the range of relief programs offered by Victorian universities, education providers and existing government support.

International students from Victoria’s tertiary education providers including universities, TAFEs, private Vocational Education and Training providers and English language colleges are eligible to apply for the hardship payment.

Existing support for international students in Victoria

In addition to the hardship funds, pastoral care and student support services available through Victorian education providers, the Victorian Government is providing the following support to international students:

  1. A dedicated online COVID-19 support hub on the Study Melbourne website, sharing current and accurate information and connecting international students to relevant resources and assistance.
  2. Employment support including eligibility to apply for the Working for Victoria program which provides opportunity to gain employment, as well as access to free resume checking and employment webinars through the Study Melbourne Student Centre.
  3. Eligibility for the Rent Relief Grant, protecting tenants from eviction as a result of financial hardship, providing access to free mediation services, and a rental relief payment for eligible households.
  4. Access to free accommodation and employment legal support through the International Student Accommodation Legal Service and Work Rights Legal Service