COVID-19 has placed an undue burden on post-secondary students with disabilities (undergraduate university, graduate university, college, cégep, and high school students entering a post-secondary institution) who were already facing immense socio-cultural and operational accessibility challenges before the pandemic. Particular challenges include rising tuition fees and a lack of transitional support for online learning such as assistive technologies, devices, and software. To do our part to help address these challenges, the National Educational Association of Disabled Students (NEADS) has put in place the Accessibility Resilience Program, with generous support from the Government of Canada’s Supports for Student Learning Program through a contribution agreement, to deliver $157,000 in student emergency financial assistance. There are two key components to this funding program:
- Emergency Relief Awards: a minimum of $30,000 to increase the number of awards offered to disabled college and university students through the 2020 NEADS Student Awards Program. All applicants who applied to the 2020 program will be eligible and no further action is required.
- Emergency Relief Grants: A maximum of $127,000 to college and university students with disabilities to facilitate recovery and account for any unforeseen costs related to rising tuition fees and the transition to online/remote learning. Application details below.
Emergency Relief Grant
The Emergency Relief Grants will be given to 87 deserving post-secondary students with disabilities to help them recover and account for any unforeseen costs related to the transition to online/remote learning resulting from COVID-19. Grant types include:
- 77 grants with a maximum claim of $1000.
- 10 grants with a maximum claim of $5000.
Eligible costs would include, but are not limited to: tuition fees, devices, cables, assistive technology software, internet bills, ergonomic desk equipment, or any other costs related to accessing education online as a result of COVID-19.
For all eligible costs, excluding tuition fees, recipients are responsible for invoicing NEADS with their receipt of purchase and would be reimbursed for costs incurred. Tuition fees would not be reimbursed but instead be applied directly to your student account.
DISCLAIMER: Applicants must wait to receive confirmation from NEADS that they are an Emergency Relief Grant recipient, including the specified value of the grant so that they can purchase their item(s) for reimbursement. If an applicant purchases an item without receiving confirmation that they have been selected as a recipient, NEADS is not liable to cover these costs.
- Applicant must be a Canadian citizen
- Applicant must have a permanent disability
- Currently enrolled in or accepted into a post-secondary institution
- Applicants must demonstrate COVID-19 impacts on their education
- Applicant must demonstrate they have not had their needs met by other funding available from federal or provincial sources
Once your application has been submitted, it will be reviewed for completeness and adherence to the above guidelines. Assuming all guidelines are met, selection committees will review applications based on the selection criteria described above. Due to the volume of applications received, only those selected to receive an award will be contacted. Recipients will be contacted by mid-January 2021.
For any inquiries pertaining to the application process please contact Lauren Gravis, Director of NEADS Student Awards at: firstname.lastname@example.org or our National Office.
Deadline: December 1, 2020.
National Educational Association of Disabled Students (NEADS)
Rm. 514 Unicentre, Carleton University
Ottawa, Ontario, K1S 5B6 tel. (613) 380-8065, ext. 201