College reaches out to donors as students worry about financial stresses

By: Sydney Lockhart

RRC students can no longer apply for the COVID-19 Emergency Student Support Fund after the college received an overwhelming number of applicants.

On April 9, the college announced the $100,000 fund to assist students, and although they’ve received outside donations it is not enough. In an announcement this afternoon, the college calls on donors to consider contributing and helping students in need.

Business Administration student Alvaro Ferreira applied for the Emergency Student Support Fund after he and his wife had their working hours cut. 

“I don’t know how much I will get. I don’t have any more information on it. They just asked about my situation right now, on the application,” said Ferreira.  

Ferreira said the couple’s household income dropped more than 50 per cent in the last month and are struggling to get by financially. 

He said his wife is unfit to work long hours in the service industry because she is pregnant, adding to their financial stress.

The Emergency Student Support Fund launched with the help of donors Princess Auto FoundationPowerland Computers, and the Women in Trades Fund. 

“The mandate of the Princess Auto Foundation is to provide financial support to trades school students throughout the country,” said David Shnider, director of Princess Auto Foundation. “We know that COVID-19 is creating financial hardships, so in response, we have instructed Red River College to allocate 50 per cent of our grant to their emergency fund programs.” 

After receiving over 500 applicants, the college reached out to the Students’ Association (SA) for support.

The SA then donated $20,000, on April 21, from their Compassionate Bursary fund.

“We want to help support the college, and they were going to match our donation so it would help more students,” said Joshua Roopchand, president of RRCSA.

The Students’ Association Food Bank works with Winnipeg Harvest throughout the year to supply students and their families with food. / RACHEL YOUNG

The student food bank funded by the RRCSA has shut down temporarily because of campus closures, and students in need are being redirected to Winnipeg Harvest for assistance.

To make a donation to the Emergency Student Support Fund visit: