UCAS Undergraduate: support for care leavers

If you're a care leaver or looked after child applying to higher education, there's support available to help you with finance, settling in, and accommodation.


Care leavers

Find out what help is available for care leavers while at university, and hear from other students telling us about their experiences.

Remember to tick the box on your UCAS application to let the university or college you're applying to know you have been in care.

Take a look at our  Care leavers guide which explains the reasons why we encourage you to tick the box in the care questions on your application.

This is confidential and won't be used against you! It does, however, let the right person at the university or college know that you might need financial or other support, and can help you put that in place before you start your course.

Finding support

Universities and colleges

To find out what the university or college you're applying to can offer, it's best to contact them directly. There are a number of ways to do this.

Take a look at the information on their website. Try typing into an internet search engine the name of the university and care leaver to help you find pages on their website about what they can offer you.


Visit Become's website Propel. 

You'll find general information about moving into higher education from care, alongside specific details about the support individual unis and colleges across the UK offer. Each uni or college has its own page, containing an overview of its courses and the specific support it can give care leavers. 

You'll be able to make an informed choice about the right course at the right place for you, and make sure you're aware of all the support you're entitled to.

Become also publishes a series of factsheets to support young people leaving care. These factsheets cover topics such as financial support post-18, getting support to go to university, and understanding pathway plans.

National Network for the Education of Care Leavers 

The NNECL website provides information on events and further resources.

Who Cares? Scotland

Who Cares? Scotland works on behalf of care experienced young people to influence change in Scotland, and ensure their voice is heard on the issues that matter to them. Visit their website for more information.

Students not supported by their parents (estranged)

If you're applying for student finance through Student Finance England or Wales, and are not supported by your parents due to a breakdown in your relationship (known as estranged), you can find information about support, financing your studies and accommodation options in the Stand Alone student guide