UCSB Rapid Rehousing Manager Explains Emergency Aid Housing Voucher
Earlier this term, the UC Santa Barbara (UCSB) Financial Crisis Response Team announced a financial aid resource for students in housing emergencies. This one-time voucher is approved for people in serious circumstances who cannot afford an upcoming rent payment or are facing eviction. This is one of many resources the Response Team offers to UCSB students who need urgent financial assistance.
Basic Needs and Rapid Relocation Manager Rebecca Segundo explained the details of this voucher and which students are eligible for aid in an interview with The Bottom Line.
“To be considered for this resource, students must be enrolled at least half-time – undergraduate students (six credits) and graduate students (four credits). Students who demonstrate financial need will be prioritized for this aid,” Segundo said. “Funding is limited for this support, so students must also have accessed 50% of their subsidized loan eligibility to be considered.”
Whether living in student accommodation or off-campus, any student currently experiencing a housing crisis is encouraged to apply by emailing Response team with a detailed description of their housing emergency. Team members will respond within one business day with further information on receipt of the voucher and any additional financial resources that may apply.
“Funds are approved on a case-by-case basis, but generally range from $500 to $800 depending on personal circumstances,” Segundo explained.
If a student believes they are not eligible for emergency assistance, it is always recommended that they seek a proper assessment of their situation. Voucher conditions exist to prioritize those most in need. Those unsure whether or not their situation qualifies as an emergency are recommended to inquire about the grant, either to receive the actual funds or to obtain other information that may be beneficial to their specific situation.
Segundo explained that the Financial Crisis Response Team is dedicated to helping any student who is struggling financially, and if someone is not eligible for the voucher, they will be carefully directed to better suited resources.
Also, this grant was created with the purpose of keeping struggling students in mind, but is not an alternative for those who cannot afford monthly rent – it is for one-time use.
Other services are available for long-term financial assistance, but these funds are explicitly for housing emergencies only. The Financial Crisis Response Team also specializes in long-term committed support for students unable to meet basic day-to-day needs and connects them with the appropriate campus department that will best meet their situation.
For those in need of urgent housing assistance, there is a transitional housing program available that provides students with a place to stay and a readily available meal plan. The program aims to protect students who have been evicted or kicked out of their accommodation between tenancies. The maximum length of stay is 25 days, but additional counseling and case management is provided to help students find a safe place to live.
Members of the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) also have access to the EOP Student Associate Scholarship designed to cover a wide range of expenses, such as medical, dental, optical, textbooks, and even college program fees. graduate studies. The only eligibility criteriain addition to EOP membership, there is at least one half-time college enrollment and one Pell/Cal Grant application.
To apply, students must first meet with an EOP advisor to provide a detailed explanation of their pressing expenses and receive a financial aid estimate. Counseling appointments can be scheduled in person at the Student Resource Building or by phone at (805) 893-4758.
Students bombarded with an emergency medical expense can claim the Campus Medical Assistance Fund (CMCAF) if they are beneficiaries of UC SHIP health insurance. Visit the linked website for a full description of the qualifications needed to apply. Financial assistance paid from the fund ranges from $500 to $6,600 depending on the severity of the injury or illness, as listed on the website.
UCSB offers a wide variety of supports for those in urgent or persistent need, and the Housing Voucher is just one initiative. For additional assistance on accessing financial resources and advice from UCSB, students can visit the Food Security and Basic Needs Advice Center located in the University Center (UCen).
As Segundo explained, “Basic needs advocates can help students facing food issues, such as CalFresh application assistance, financial insecurity, and housing insecurity. Please visit Basic Needs Resources website for additional resources. Students wishing to connect online can schedule a 30 minute consultation appointment using this Coastal link.”