Estranged students

The term 'estranged student' is used to refer to young students who are studying without the support of a family network. We have designed a support package to assist you in these circumstances.

The Stand Alone Pledge logo

Students who are estranged have no communicative relationship with either of their living biological parents and often their wider family networks as well.

We have signed up to the Stand Alone Pledge, to publically declare our support for estranged students.

Dedicated member of staff

We have a dedicated member of staff who can act as a mentor to support students who are estranged. This can also include being the first point of contact for a Support Worker, if you have one. The mentor provides advice and guidance to you before you start your course and is there throughout your journey at Cardiff University. The mentor can assist you on a range of issues such as:

  • funding issues
  • money management
  • housing
  • employment
  • academic-related (extenuating circumstances, taking time out of your course etc).

The mentor can assist you by liaising with student finance to ensure they treat you as an independent student to ensure you get the maximum funding you are entitled to.

Einir England

Support meeting

Once you have been offered a place with us, we will offer you the opportunity to come and meet the dedicated contact before the start of the course to assist with the transition to university life. You can also bring along to the meeting your support worker or whoever you feel most comfortable with. During this meeting we can discuss the following:

  • how much financial support is available
  • how to apply to student finance as an estranged student
  • the type of accommodation best suited to you
  • where appropriate, make provision for any additional support eg. for a disability or specific learning difficulties.

Accommodation support

We offer year round accommodation to students who are estranged, so you don’t have to worry about somewhere to stay over the vacation periods.

We provide support for students looking to rent in the private sector after the first year and can act as a guarantor if you need us to.

Financial support

We also offer an Estranged Student Bursary of up to £3,000 for a typical three-year course. To be eligible for the Bursary you must meet the following criteria:

  • you must be estranged from your parents or guardians and
  • this occurred between the age of 16 and leaving school or further education (FE) college
  • the estrangement must have occurred in the last 10 years.

These are decided on a case-by-case basis.

Estranged students are also given priority for our Financial Assistance Programme. This can help with unforeseen financial difficulties and also with additional cost you might incur that other students don’t such as support with rent over the summer period.


Please contact Einir England, the dedicated member of staff for further information.

Einir England