Care Leaver Support

The transition to University and becoming a student is an exciting prospect, but can also seem daunting. We recognise that this transition can be a difficult time, especially if you are leaving care. To help make the transition as easy as possible, we have developed guidance and a support package tailored for you.

Our care leaver support is run by the Care Leaver Adviser/Co-ordinator, Anne McGrath. She is here to offer you guidance and support throughout your studies. At the beginning of each academic year, she will invite you to a meeting to explain the range of support that's available and send you seasonal Newsletters throughout the academic year.

We are proud to have been awarded the Buttle UK Quality Mark for our commitment to care leavers.

Download our Information sheet for Care Leavers (PDF).

How do we define a care leaver?

The University defines a care leaver as a young person who has been in local authority care, including public care, foster care, semi-independent living or residential care homes.

We are committed to supporting care leavers by:

  • working with looked-after young people to help increase the number of care leavers entering higher education
  • raising awareness of the needs of students from care
  • enabling care leavers to make the most of their time in higher education and to complete their courses successfully
  • helping higher education providers to identify how best to support care leavers
  • contributing to a national framework to assist Local Authorities to fulfil their obligations to care leavers

Types of support

Academic support

Our Academic Learning Development Centre aims to support you in your learning and academic development. The centre offers one-to-one academic skills tutorials and workshops in a number of areas like essay writing, presentations and critical thinking.

Financial support

Care Leavers' Bursary

If you are a home student who has come to us from a care background, you can apply for a Care Leavers’ Bursary for each year of academic study. It’s worth £750 each year.

To apply, just get in touch with our Student Funding team at [email protected] or call them on +44 (0)20 7911 5000 ext 66989.


For details on eligibility for scholarships such as the Postgraduate Care Leaver Scholarship, get in touch with our Scholarships team at [email protected] or call them on +44 (0)20 7911 5000 ext 66977

Financial Capability Adviser

Our Financial Capability Adviser, Laura Wood, can help you organise and manage your finances – just get in touch with her at [email protected] or on +44 (0)20 7911 5000 ext 66080.

Student accommodation

Care leavers are given priority consideration for student accommodation all year round and for the duration of your course. You will be required to provide a letter from your Leaving Care team confirming that you are a care leaver and require accommodation.

For details, get in touch with our Student Accommodation office.

Tutorial support

University tutors can provide additional support for you if needed – just speak to your personal tutor. If you would like help doing so, please contact Anne McGrath at [email protected] or on +44 (0)20 7911 5000 ext 66080.

Counselling and mentoring

We have a team of experienced counsellors who are happy to talk to you about anything that's bothering you. Individual and group counselling sessions are available, and an initial assessment appointment is offered to identify what kind of support you might need.

Mentoring support is available to students with long-term mental health problems, For more details, have a look at our Counselling webpages.

Disability Learning Support

If you're a care leaver with a disability, get in touch with our Disability Learning Support team to organise any support you need.


If you need help looking for work or getting your career on track, get in touch with Stephen Cole in our Career Development Centre.

Get in touch with a Care Leaver Adviser/Co-ordinator

Anne McGrath is our Care Leaver Adviser and Co-ordinator. She can offer you advice and guidance on both university and local authority support before and during your studies. She is also responsible for monitoring the provision and support for care leavers.

Get in touch with Anne at [email protected] or on +44 (0)20 7911 5000 ext 66080

Note: All enquiries are treated confidentially. 



Get in touch with one of our counsellors, look at self-help resources, and more.

Giving advice to a prospective student

Student Advice

Get advice on a variety of practical matters, including funding and visas.