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AFF secures better access to student loans for Army spouses and partners

The Army Families Federation (AFF) is celebrating a change to Student Finance England’s loan qualifying criteria, which will allow more Army families to access a loan when undertaking a UK based course.

As of 1 August 2017, families posted overseas who wish to undertake a qualifying UK based university or college course can now access a loan via Student Finance England even if they are not in the UK on the first day of their chosen course. This applies to both full and part time courses.

An AFF win

This AFF win was originally announced by the Universities Minister Jo Johnson back in 2016, after much lobbying by the charity and joint working with the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS).

The change applies to new students starting a distance learning course in 2017/18 and also to those who have already started a distance learning course before and who are continuing that course in 2017/18.

Unfortunately, this does not apply to those from the devolved nations. To be eligible, you must qualify for the English student support package.

Putting families first

AFF continues to prioritise spousal employment and training, and this includes those posted overseas who sometimes cannot work and so choose to undertake a course during that time.

AFF Chief Executive Sara Baade said: “AFF is delighted that the new, more inclusive student funding rules have now come into force; Armed Forces families who are posted abroad will now have access to the same opportunities as those living in the UK, when accessing Student Finance England loans. We look forward to seeing the positive impact on military spouses this change will bring.”

Find out more

For more information about the work AFF does in support of Army families, visit their website www.aff.org.uk

ENDS

Notes to Editor:

  • The Army Families Federation (AFF) is the independent voice of Army families: Regular or Reserve, wherever they are based, whatever the make-up of their family.
  • Throughout the UK and overseas, AFF works hard to achieve policy change and progress in favour of Army families; they offer advice and guidance on all aspects of Army life, confidentially and in an easy-to-digest way.
  • They work with other agencies such as MOD, government, charities and other key players to strengthen their cause and fight for a fair deal for families everywhere.
  • Their family-focussed website (aff.org.uk) contains information about all aspects of Army family life, and their Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages offer families other easy ways to contact us, interact with us, or simply follow the work we are doing.
  • AFF operates by four core values, which are pivotal to our work. These are:
    • AFF always puts families first
    • AFF can be trusted
    • AFF is bold and determined
    • AFF is inclusive

Media Contact:

For more information about AFF’s work, contact Donna Bernard, AFF Comms & Marketing Director, at commsmarketingdirector@aff.org.uk

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