Managing your money

Struggling to fund yourself through summer? Find out about the FAPA summer fund!

Rosie, student intern with the Advice and Money Team, shares some key information for students struggling to fund themselves through the summer…


Rent, books, bills, parties and polka-dot wrapping to adorn that last-minute birthday present for your favourite flatmate – it all piles up! As students, we all understand how difficult it can be to budget your money whilst at University. It can be just as difficult to budget during the summer months.


Don’t panic, the Advice and Money Team can help

If you feel that you may struggle to fund yourself through the summer, don’t despair! The Advice and Money team are here to help!

You could be eligible to apply for the Financial Assistance Programme Awards (FAPA) summer fund. Now, I know what you’re thinking: ‘That sounds complicated and I’m already under enough stress as it is.’ But wait, what’s that? This just in: Rosie Riordan (that’s me), intern for the Advice and Money team, is here to help you! I’m here to explain exactly how to apply to the Financial Assistance Programme (FAP) and hopefully answer the many questions already whizzing around your brain. And guess what? After that, there will be someone on the Advice and Money team to support you through the process. Are you ready? Great, let’s go.


What is the Financial Assistance Programme?

So, what exactly is the FAP anyway? Good question. FAP aims to provide students with advice and support to improve their money skills and financial competency so that they can remain in their programme of study. If you are eligible to apply you could receive financial support for your living costs in the form of a non-repayable grant; although, if you are going through a short-term problem it could be in the form of a loan.

The first thing you need to know is whether you’re eligible to apply to FAP. According to my sources, you could receive a FAPA if you are a continuing student with essential expenditure who cannot work over the summer and finds themselves in financial hardship due to either:

  1. Sickness, disability or caring responsibilities.
  2. Course commitments such as exams, field trips or unpaid placements.
  3. Being unable to return home due to exceptional circumstances.

You are not eligible to apply for an FAPA, if you are:

  1. A student who has already received £3500 from the FAPA this academic year.
  2. A student who has completed your final year. (You may be eligible for benefits instead).
  3. A student who is not in financial hardship.
  4. A student who has not taken out statutory funding.


Applying for a FAPA

If you think you are eligible you can visit the Student Support Centre at 50 Park Place or Cardigan House at the Heath Park campus to pick up an FAPA application form. Alternatively, you can download the form yourself here.

You will need to fill out the form and return it to the Advice and Money team with all the requested evidence that the form asks for. The application form outlines all the evidence you will need to support your application. You will also need to provide information about your funding for the academic year 16/17 and your financial situation for the summer period. Remember to provide evidence explaining why you are unable to work. Don’t forget to say why you are applying in the ‘supporting statement’ section of the form. After handing this all in to the Advice and Money team they will review your application and contact you within five working days.

If you have previously received an award from FAP during the academic year 16/17, you’ll be pleased to know that you don’t have to fill out another application form. All you need to do is write a covering letter, detailing why you are in hardship and applying for the summer fund. You must also provide:

  1. Your latest 3 months’ bank statement and current balances for all accounts.
  2. Details of any change to your expenditure (eg. increase in rent).
  3. Proof of why you are unable to work.

You can bring all of this to the Advice and Money Team at the Support Centre at 50 Park Place and they can review your application from there.

Remember: The deadline to apply for FAP closes at 3:30pm on 25th July 2017.


Watch our video, ‘How to apply to the FAP’


I hope I’ve helped you today and just remember, even if you’re not eligible for an FAPA there are still many other options for you. Get in touch with Advice and Money to find out more.

Contact Advice and Money

Student Support Services at Cardiff University are here to help you, please drop in or contact us should you have any questions.

Telephone: 02920 874844.



Best wishes,

Rosie, Advice and Money student intern.


Your Student Life, Supported.

The Student Support Centre has a range of services dedicated to helping students make the most of their time at University, including: Advice and Money, Careers and Employability, Counselling, Health and Wellbeing, Disability and Dyslexia and International Student Support. The Student Support Centres are located at 50 Park Place, Cathays Campus and Cardigan House, Heath Park Campus.

For further details of services, events, opening times and more find us on the University Intranet.


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