Earlier this year, we launched a fundraising appeal for our student Hardship Fund, as part of our response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This appeal was launched by our Chancellor, The Rt. Hon John Bercow:
The response to the appeal has been phenomenal, a true representation of our Essex Spirit. We have managed to raise over £225,000 from over 600 donors, including nearly 100 University staff. Our alumni, staff and friends from all over the world have joined together in these turbulent times to support our students, many of whom have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.
For the academic year 2019/2020, 904 students applied to the Hardship Fund, with 594 bursaries awarded. That is six times the typical number of applications. Thanks to the support of our donors, we have been able to help students with their rent, their food, their essential equipment costs, and helped mitigate the impact of losing short-term work opportunities as a result of the pandemic.
The fund is now less than £25,000 from hitting our initial £250,000 target, and a number of activities are planned in the coming weeks designed to help reach the target before Christmas.
If you would like to know more, please visit the dedicated Hardship Fund webpage.