International Students House

Financial support

International Students House

At International Students House we recognise that being a student (especially an international student) can come with a degree of uncertainty and challenges. We aim to support London-based students who have found themselves in unexpected financial difficulties during their studies through The Mary Trevelyan Hardship Fund (MTF).

The Mary Trevelyan Hardship Fund

The fund was set up in 1986 and is named after the founder of International Students House – Mary Trevelyan. MTF is a small fund from which a grant or a loan (up to £1,000) can be made available to either international students studying at a Higher Education Institution in London or any full-time student (including British students) who are a resident at ISH.

Who can apply

Students must meet all of the following criteria to apply for the Mary Trevelyan Hardship Fund:

  • Studying full-time at a recognised Higher Education Institution in London

  • In financial need due to unexpected circumstances

  • Either an ISH resident (of any nationality) OR a non-British student at an Institution that holds membership with ISH

What to know:
  • The amount awarded varies according to individual circumstances but an average award can range anywhere between £400-£600.
  • The grant cannot normally be used to pay university tuition fees
  • Preference will be given to students in their final year of study
  • Evidence of applications to / awards from a university’s hardship fund would strengthen an application
Tips on Making a Strong Application

Completing a funding application can be stressful and daunting so we have compiled a number of tips that would help you make a strong application!

  • Answer all the questions on the application form fully and clearly, with no omissions.
  • Give as much detail as you can of the reasons why you are experiencing financial hardship: What is unexpected about your situation? What change in circumstances has occurred? Make sure to provide evidence of your changed circumstances (e.g., if a family member has lost a job or fallen sick – attach an email/medical letter supporting this).
    Note: saying that London is more expensive than you expected is not unusual and will not make your application stand out.
  •  Evidence – everything stated in the application should be supported by documentary evidence, so make sure you provide all the documents requested and any others that are relevant to your particular situation, e.g., if you have stated that your rent is £500 per month, include a letter from your landlord/copy of tenancy agreement to prove this. If you have a part-time job, please submit payslips or indicate your earnings on your bank statement.
  • Be realistic about the shortfall in funds: how much financial support do you need and if your application is successful, how will you spend the money awarded? e.g., if you are requesting a grant to attend a conference or purchase materials for your course, please submit evidence of these costs.

Remember, as the funds are very limited, your application is more likely to be successful if you provide sufficient details and are able to demonstrate your need.


For any enquiries about the Mary Trevelyan Hardship Fund or financial support you can contact Dr Sharon Bolton, our Dean of Student Life

Phone: +44 (0) 20 7631 8366
If you prefer meeting face to face, you can book an appointment here: