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Trusts and Charities funding

Trusts and Charities funding

Is there any financial help I can get from trusts and charities?

Many trusts and charities have very limited funds and some are not able to make any awards to students at all. Some trusts and charities can give you an idea of the amount of money they tend to award to successful applicants: you can usually read about this in their online information or contact them directly to find out by email or phone. If the amounts they offer are quite low, and if they offer very few awards each year, make sure you have considered all other available options before applying. If you genuinely have no other options, you might wish to try applying to trusts and charities as a top up to your main funding.

How can I find trusts and charities to apply to?


Turn2us, a charitable service, has a database of trusts and charities which may provide financial assistance to students. Although there is an online search facility, it is usually better to ring their helpline on 0808 802 2000 and speak to an adviser. Lines are open Mon-Fri 9am to 5:30pm. This is because the adviser you speak to can advise you about organisations which would not appear using an online search and which could potentially help you based on your individual circumstances.

BMA Charities Trust Fund

This fund offers a limited number of awards to second degree medical students who are not eligible for a tuition fee loan or maintenance grant because they already have a degree and who do not have access to the NHS Bursary Scheme or similar funding from a statutory body. The fund also offers help to medical students in financial hardship. For more information and to check your eligibility email:

The Dain Fund

The Dain Fund helps with the education costs of the children of medical doctors. It assists families in financial difficulties following crises such as unemployment, family breakdown or serious illness of a parent. For more information please email with details of your situation. Applications are welcomed throughout the year.

Royal Medical Benevolent Fund

The Royal Medical Benevolent Fund (RMBF), the UK's leading charity for doctors, medical students and their families, offers grants to help medical students facing unexpected and exceptional financial hardship. These are offered to students in the last 2 years of their course.

To apply to the fund, you must have exhausted all other sources of funding including the University Financial Assistance Fund and the Dean’s Benevolence Fund (see the Money for QMUL section of this guide), and you must also meet other eligibility criteria. If you are interested in applying, you need to email the RMBF casework department or call on 020 8540 9194 (option 1) to discuss whether you may be eligible for help. You can also contact a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service.

Local Authorities

You could also look on your Local Authority website to see if there are any educational charities for students living in your local area.

When and how should I apply to trusts and charities?

The Advice and Counselling website has detailed information about this, including what information to include in a letter of application. You can contact a Welfare Adviser in the Advice and Counselling Service to get advice on your applications. Where applicable, a Welfare Adviser can also write a covering letter for you to include with your application.

Raising funds from the general public (crowdfunding)

What is crowdfunding?

This is a way of gathering relatively small amounts of money from individual members of the public (via a crowdfunding website), which when combined might raise the total amount of funds to pay for a project. However, given that undergraduate study normally attracts funding like Student Finance or an NHS Bursary, it is likely to be difficult to obtain funding towards the cost of a degree programme.

How does crowdfunding work?

Crowdfunding websites usually allow you to set a funding target, post a video outlining your studies and explaining why you are asking people to fund you, and allow members of the public to pledge funds online. You normally have to pay a fee to use these websites and you should check the terms and conditions carefully before you sign up. Some schemes state that if you don’t reach your funding target in a certain time frame, the funds already pledged will be returned to the people who made them, although other schemes can offer more flexibility.

Where can I find crowdfunding organisations?

You can usually find a number of these organisations by searching the internet, although be aware that the majority of crowdfunding websites are not aimed at helping people to raise funds for studies – more commonly they are aimed at helping entrepreneurs who are starting a business - but you may be able to find some if you search carefully.

When planning your funding campaign, think carefully about what is unique about you and what you plan to achieve during and after your studies. Potential funders are more likely to offer you funds if they believe in you and share your ambitions for how your studies will be of value to you and the wider community.

Law, regulations and policies can change quickly. The information on our website is given in good faith and has been carefully checked but QMUL cannot accept responsibility for any errors or omissions. QMUL is not responsible for the content or reliability of the linked websites which are provided for further information.

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