The COVID-19 pandemic is impacting graduate students at Monash on many levels. Read on for useful resources that may assist you and help get you through this challenging time.
The MGA’s Financial Assistance guide
This guide provides the details of a number of organisations (including within Monash University) that provide financial relief.
Click HERE to view or download the PDF.
Monash University’s Compassionate and Hardship Package
Due to high demand, the University’s compassionate and hardship package closed on 5 June 2020. No further applications will be allowed.
Emergency Grants Scheme
If you are experiencing hardship, which is affecting your ability to study, you may apply for the emergency grants scheme. This grant is up to $500 and can help pay for essential living expenses, technology for study, course materials, or other expenses. For further information including eligibility criteria and how to apply, please click here.
Accessing your superannuation
The government is allowing individuals affected by COVID-19 to access up to $10,000 of their superannuation in 2019–20 and a further $10,000 in 2020–21. This measure is also applicable to international students who are experiencing financial hardship and have been living in Australia for longer than 12 months. For more information visit the Australian Tax Office website and register your details at myGov.
Working for Victoria program
If you’re legally allowed to work in Australia, you can apply for the Victorian Government’s Working for Victoria program. This includes workers who have recently lost their jobs and casuals who no longer have shifts. Find out more and apply here.
Australian Government support for domestic students
The Australian Government has introduced additional payments and supplements as part of their COVID-19 support package. Find out more and check if you’re eligible.
If you are unable to work or have lost work due to COVID-19, you may be eligible for financial assistance from the government. Check your eligibility here.
Department of Social Services
The Australian Government Department of Social Services website contains a Grant Service Directory for Victoria detailing community organisations who provide financial crisis and emergency support.
Community Support Frankston (CSF)
Due to the current pandemic, CSF is offering Frankston residents emergency relief and essential items such as food parcels, personal hygiene products and laundry vouchers. Please call 9783 7284 or email firstname.lastname@example.org where you will be able to speak to an interviewer who will assess your current needs and discuss how CSF can assist you. The telephone lines are open Monday to Friday – 9.30am to 3.30pm.
Mental health and wellbeing
Watch this video with a message about looking after your mental health.
Find out more about the Monash Counselling service for staff and students.
If you are located outside Australia, you can access counselling by calling:
From Malaysia: 1800 818 356 (toll free)
From Italy: 800 791 847 (toll free)
From elsewhere: Students +61 2 8295 2917
Beyond Blue is an Australian organisation which aims to provides information and support to help everyone achieve their best possible mental health, whatever their age and wherever they live. Check out their dedicated page for supporting mental health during the COVID-19 outbreak: Looking after your mental health during the coronavirus outbreak.
Australian Psychological Society (APS)
Check out this website for COVID-19 information sheets and explore the site further for more info about mental health and finding a psychologist.
Headspace has developed an information sheet for people affected by stress related to COVID-19.
Coronavirus (COVID-19): family guide
Find information about COVID-19 and protective hygiene, plus tips to help you and your family cope on raisingchildren.net.au
Explaining the Coronavirus to Children
Axel Scheffler (the Gruffalo illustrator) has illustrated a digital book for primary school age children, free for anyone to read on screen or print out, about the coronavirus and the measures taken to control it. Click here to download a copy.
Lifeline is committed to looking after your mental health and wellbeing during the COVID-19 outbreak. Lifeline telephone, text and webchat services will continue as normal throughout the COVID-19 crisis. Click here to find out how to contact Lifeline.
Monash University Medical Services
If you’re at home and unwell, call a Monash triage nurse on (03) 9905 3175 (Monday – Friday, 9am to 5pm) and follow their instructions. For after-hours advice, call the Coronavirus Hotline on 1800 675 398.
Monash Uni Medical Services are operating a screening and triage service in accordance with Victoria’s health guidelines. As part of this process, clients will be referred to a Fast Track Clinic if displaying COVID-19-like symptoms (they will be treated by a nurse or doctor as usual in a separate room, or an alternative location on campus).
Telehealth (phone or video) consultations
Monash doctors and counsellors are providing over-the-phone and video consultations.
Book a telehealth consultation with a doctor by calling an on-campus clinic, or select Telehealth (phone consult) in the online booking system (for your preferred campus).
Click here to find out more.
Health Direct is a Government website with lots of useful health information, including an online symptom checker for COVID-19.
Relationships Australia are an independent, not-for-profit organisation, dedicated to enhancing relationships within families and their communities in order to foster personal and social wellbeing. If you have an enquiry about relationship counselling or mediation, please call 1300 364 277 or email email@example.com
Free COVID-19 Screening Clinic
StarHealth are now operating a FREE COVID-19 screening clinic at the Prahran Town Hall. They are open 7 days a week.
To attend the clinic for screening, you must register first by calling 9525 1300.
COVID-19 health costs waiver
To ensure payment issues are not a barrier for people from overseas with symptoms of COVID-19 seeking early medical advice, Victorian hospitals will waive the costs of treatment for overseas travellers, including international students, who fall ill in Australia (and are not eligible for Medicare) and do not have adequate insurance coverage. Seeking medical treatment will not impact your student visa.
Housing and accommodation support
COVID-19 Rent Relief Grant
The Victorian Government has recently announced rent relief grants for Victorians experiencing rental hardship as a result of the COVID-19 crisis.
The package provides a one off grant to help Victorian renters maintain safe, secure and stable accommodation. Domestic and international students are eligible to apply for this grant. Click here for further information with Housing Victoria.
Consumer Affairs Victoria
Consumer Affairs Victoria provides information for students who are unable to travel to Victoria and need to cancel their rental accommodation before moving in, or change the date of moving in.
Tenants Victoria also have detailed information for renters impacted by COVID-19 including advice on what to do if you cannot pay your rent.
International Student Accommodation Legal Service
Study Melbourne’s International Student Accommodation Legal Service offers a free, confidential and independent help for international students with accommodation issues, including those students who remain or have returned overseas. To make a phone appointment email firstname.lastname@example.org. Translation services are available.
International Student Legal Information
The International Student Legal Information is a free legal information resource is for international students living in Victoria. It helps you know what to do and where to get help for problems connected to where you work, live and study. You can read stories based on legal problems international students have had, and learn about the people and services that can help you.
International Student Support Network
The International Student Support Network aims to offer short-term homestay accommodation to financially-vulnerable international students in Australia who in need support and assistance as a result of the global economic crisis caused by COVID-19.
St Vincent de Paul Society
St Vincent de Paul Society (Vinnies) provides support for emergency housing and homelessness, finances, food, health and wellbeing to vulnerable people across Australia and Victoria.
Helpline 1800 Vinnies: 1800 846 643
The Salvation Army provides all social services without discrimination. Services include housing and homelessness support, finding employment and youth services.
Phone: 13 SALVOS (13 72 58)
Safety at home
Domestic Violence Resource Centre Victoria (DVRCV) has information and advice on how the COVID-19 pandemic impacts those experiencing family violence and their friends and family.
If you are experiencing violence, or are anxious about the behaviour of a partner or friend, here are some numbers you can call:
National confidential information, counselling and support service to support people impacted by sexual assault, domestic or family violence and abuse. Phone: 1800 737 732 (open 24 hours)
Monash University Safer Community Unit
Phone: +61 3 9905 1599
Victorian Centre Against Sexual Assault
To contact any CASA and the after hours Sexual Assault Crisis Line (SACL) simply call 1800 806 292 or Email SACL at email@example.com
Women’s Legal Service Victoria
Women’s Legal Service Victoria provides advice to address legal issues arising from relationship breakdown or violence. To access their Legal Advice Line, phone 8622 0600 or 1800 133 302.
International Student Emergency Relief Fund
Funded by the Victorian Government, the International Student Emergency Relief Fund will provide a payment of up to A$1,100 for vulnerable international students who have lost their job or had a significant reduction to their employment and are facing financial hardship as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19). The fund complements the range of relief programs offered by Victorian universities, education providers and existing government support. Please complete the this form to register your interest in this fund.
Department of Home Affairs
The Australian Government’s Department of Home Affairs provides important information about travel restrictions and visa for international students. You can also check out the Frequently Asked Questions page for common visa questions.
Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC)
If you are a student from overseas on a temporary student visa, you can contact your Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) insurance provider for advice on your health cover and services available to support you, including counselling and other mental health support. Your health cover may help you access and or meet the costs of medical and hospital care while in Australia. This advice is confidential and will not affect your visa conditions or your student enrolment. Links to providers are provided below.
ahm OSHC – 134 148
Allianz Global Assistance – 13 67 42
BUPA Australia – 1300 884 235
CBHS International Health – 1300 174 538
Medibank Private – 1300 561 012
NIB OSHC – 1800 775 204
International Students’ Work Rights Legal Service
Study Melbourne’s International Students’ Work Rights Legal Service is a free, confidential and independent legal service, provided by employment lawyers, to help international students. This service is available Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, by appointment only. To make an appointment or ask a question please contact their staff by email.
Read the latest Australian COVID-19 news in your language on SBS.
The Victorian State Government has COVID-19 translated information for people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. Find your language here.
Free Access to Journals
During the COVID-19 pandemic, a number of content providers are offering temporary free access to scholarly content and collections (removing paywalls), or offering free access to their content on platforms where Monash is already a subscriber (free to subscribers). Click here to find out more.