Cost of Living Support

With over 15% of UK households in serious financial difficulties, the cost of living has become the primary concern for most families in the country. The number has almost doubled in the last year.

The only way to manage the cost of living crisis is to improve the household income in the long run, which is only possible with education. Fortunately, Dearne Valley College is going the extra mile to make Further Education and Higher Education flexible and affordable for youngsters as well as adults.

Below is a list of the ways that you can get support to get the education you dream of without having to worry about the costs.

Dearne Valley College

Student bursaries provide immediate relief to the financial conditions of the learners.

Keep an eye on the Student Support and Finance page for bursaries being offered that are applicable to you.

Student Finance

There are several ways to finance your studies when you enrol onto a college course. You pay all of these loans back in the future, once you have a full-time job and are reaping the benefits of your education. In some cases, the loan can be waived off as well.

Visit the Advanced Learner Loan page for more details. The best way to improve your chances to receive student finance is to apply early for the course of your choice.

NUS Totum Card

Once enrolled at college, all learners are able to purchase a TOTUM card online, which offers discounts when shopping, eating out, going to the cinema and more. Applications are made online only with a suitable photograph at

Transport Facilities

Travelling to college campuses is convenient using public or private transportation. There are parking sites at each campus for private vehicles as well. You can also buy travel passes to cut down the costs of commuting over a long period of time.

Alternatively, you can make use of the Student Bus Service and get an affordable pick-up and drop-off services from the nearest bus stop on the route.

Childcare Support

As per the Government Care to Learn initiative, you are eligible for childcare costs if you are aged below 20 and studying at a college. So, don’t let the worries of childcare stop you from completing the education levels you deserve.

Free Meals

There is no such thing as free lunch – outside our college. But inside, you are awarded a meal allowance of £3.50 per timetabled day to use on healthy meals.

There is no need to apply for these meals, you get your meal credit preloaded in your learner ID card.

Click here for more information about free college meals

Health and Wellbeing

We have a dedicated Student Support team to help you with any problems or concerns related to your health and wellbeing. You have complete access to coaching, counselling or mentoring services while keeping safe with our stringent safeguarding policies.

Looked-after and leaving-care young persons are given special support on campus with concern for their wellbeing. Also, they are eligible for bursaries to help them in every way.

We take mental health very seriously and strive to provide an open environment where you can express your thoughts and emotions with complete freedom. Still, if there is any help you need on those lines, you can always access Togetherall or other national counselling and support services for Online Mental Health Support as well.

Fitness and Sports

We have fitness suites at each of our college campuses, some of them are completely free while others are accessible for a minimal fee. At Dearne Valley College we have DVC Sports.

You can play a game of ping pong in our indoor sports area or participate in team sports in our regular sporting events aimed to engage students in healthy activities.

Personal Care

Since our colleges offer Hair and Beauty courses at all levels, we provide access to our high-value luxury salons for all your personal care needs with a student discount on top of the already affordable prices.

Take a look at Dearne Valley College’s Aspirations Hair and Beauty Salon.

Free Distance Learning Courses

When it comes to learning, distance doesn’t matter. Even if you live far away from our colleges, or do not want to travel, you can always get enrolled on our free Distance Learning Courses with a variety of courses to choose from including Health and Social Care, Mental Health, Education And Training, Nutrition and Health And Business Management.

Rotherham Council’s Relief Efforts to Counter Cost of Living Crisis

Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council (RMBC) is supporting the local community by distributing £25million into family budgets focusing these efforts towards those on the lowest incomes through

  • Government Energy support scheme
  • Council Tax support schemes
  • Holiday meal support for Free School Meals recipients
  • Energy Support Schemes
  • Crisis food support
  • Targeted support to pensioners, care leavers

Money Matters

Many people are having difficulties due to the rising cost of living. You might not realise you’re entitled to some help.

You can find out about the range of local help that’s available, as well as national support, here: Money Matters website.

Warm Welcome

RMBC is working with partner organisations across Rotherham to ensure a ‘Warm Welcome’ for residents across a range of spaces across the borough.

Warm Welcome spaces will provide an opportunity for people to come together, share and use resources, with many spaces, such as our libraries, putting on additional activity sessions through the winter.

So don’t feel lonely this winter, just head out to the nearest Warm Welcome Spaces near you.

Blog posts

Blessing in disguise: How the cost of living crisis might be a life-changing event for you