Last week students from the University of Witwatersrand (Wits) protested for better student accommodation and free education among other things, also listing a number of demands they wanted from the institution.
In said list, the Wits Hardship Fund was one of the issues the Student Representative Council (SRC) brought up.
According to the University’s dean of students, Jerome September, the Wits Hardship Fund was established by the institution and has been allocated R13 million to help students who are in urgent need of assistance, This would come in the form of funding for accommodation and registration.
The University has also categorised the Wits Hardship Fund into three tiers, where it will determine if students qualify for assistance.
This is for students who owe less than R10 000 to the University, and have signed an acknowledgement of debt. The students will then be able to register, but don’t need to apply for the Hardship Fund.
This is applicable to students who owe more than R10 000 to the institution, and must apply to the Wits Hardship Fund. Students who meet this criteria will be provided with assistance under the condition that their debt is less than R100 000. Students will also have to sign an acknowledgement of debt.
Any students who require urgent assistance with accommodation must present themselves to the University for an assessment interview. Wits has secured a number of additional beds to assist students facing difficulty with obtaining accommodation due to lack of funding.
Thus far the funding has assisted 567 students, with 220 awarded funding for urgent accommodation and 347 students who were assisted with registration.
Students need to contact [email protected] or visit the special office to set up for Hardship Fund related queries at the Robert Sobukwe Building.