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One in 10 students turns to food banks due to tuition crisis | Food banks

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More than one in 10 students use food banks because they can’t make ends meet during the cost of living crisis, according to a survey by the National Union of Students (NUS).

The survey of more than 3,500 university students found that 11% use food banks, up from 5% in January, while 96% cut back as a result rapid increase in prices and bills.

One in five say they can’t afford toiletries, and one in 10 can’t afford hygiene products when needed.

Last month it was reported that the number of graduates had increased by 3,000%. owe more than £100,000 in student loan debt.

In 2016, the charity Sutton Trust discovered this British graduates have the biggest debts in the English-speaking world, and since then the average loan balance has risen.

The NUS survey found that a third of students live on less than £50 a month after paying rent and bills, with many reporting that their allowance is not enough to pay for the weekly shop, travel to university or cover their energy bill.

The survey also revealed the cost of the learning crisis, with three-quarters of students saying they would not be able to pay for learning materials without extra support.

Four in 10 (42%) say they can’t get to campus or have to travel less, and 41% neglect their health to save money by skipping “extras” like dental visits.

Nine in 10 (92%) say the crisis is affecting their mental health, while 31% say rising costs are having a “big” impact.

Only a fifth of students say they received any government support and only 8% said they thought ministers were doing enough to support them.

More than eight in 10 (83%) sought financial support in other ways, such as using credit cards, “buy now pay later” credit schemes. such as Klarna or take loans from the bank.

More than half (53%) of students say they turned to family and friends for support, and 40% turned to them for loans.

A third of students say the rising cost of living has also affected their families. Students those with caring responsibilities and disabilities, those separated from their families and people from poorer backgrounds have been hit hardest by the crisis.

An NUS spokesman said: “The huge rise in bills, food and living costs, combined with skyrocketing rents, is putting students on the edge… We see the stress and anxiety piled on them as they juggle debt between different cards to stay afloat.

“Despite all this, the government is completely ignoring the students. These results are grim; we are knee-deep in a tuition crisis that will hit the poorest students the hardest.”

The union called on the government to introduce an individual package of living wage support for students, and also demanded to bring student maintenance and the minimum wage of students in line with the living wage.

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