Former Children and Youth in Care

Tuition Fee Waivers, Bursaries and Awards

A Guide to: Scholarships, Bursaries, Tuition Waivers & Awards provides a comprehensive list of financial supports available to former children and youth in and from government care in British Columbia attending BC public post-secondary institutions.

The government of BC offers a Provincial Tuition Waiver Program, which supports B.C. students who are former youth in care who are attending either full-time or part-time studies at a B.C. public post-secondary institution, Native Education College or one of 10 eligible union trades training centres

Credit: Don Erhardt, Native Indian Teacher Education Program, University of British Columbia

There are are four main sources of financial support for former children and youth in care attending BC public post-secondary institutions  These include the following:

1. Tuition Fee Waivers and Bursaries are available for former children and youth in care attending public post-secondary institutions in BC.

Eligible students are:

  • from British Columbia
  • aged between 19 to 26 years; and
  • have been in care for a minimum of 24 months.

Students can apply through their financial aid office.

2. The Youth Educational Assistance Fund for former youth in care (YEAF) is a non-repayable grant of up to a maximum of $5,500 per year. Students between the ages of 19 – 24 can apply for this grant up to four times to help offset the cost of their education.

To be eligible, you must also be:

  • A full-time student or a student with a permanent disability studying at a 40 percent course load.
  • Registered to take post-secondary-level courses from a designated post-secondary institution in an eligible program leading to a certificate, diploma or degree that is at least 12 weeks long.

3. The Youth Futures Education Fund (YFEF) supports former children and youth in care with non-tuition living expenses such as housing, food and transportation. Students receiving a tuition waiver or bursary through their institution may be eligible for this funding and should apply through their financial aid office.

4. If you’ve been in foster care or had a Youth Agreement, you may qualify for the Agreements with a Young Adult (AYA) program to help cover the cost of things like housing, child care, tuition and health care while you go back to school, or attend rehabilitation, vocational or approved life skills program.

There are also resources on post-secondary funding opportunities for former children in care on the websites of the Adoptive Families Association of BC and the Foster Parent Support Services Society.  One of the handy resources is AgedOut, which has information about planning for your education, finding housing, getting id and other practical matters.