Everything Students Need to Know About the SASSA SRD Grant

by Staff Reporter

The Minister of Finance, Enoch Godongwana, has annnounced that the Social relief of Distress (SRD) Grant will increase by R20 from Monday, 1 April, meaning recepients will now receive a total of R370 instead of R350. This is great news for students in need of financial assistance in 2024.

The SRD Grant, administered by the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA), plays a critical role in enabling access to education by offering financial assistance to disadvantaged students.

Initially introduced as a temporary solution that would alleviate the economic strains caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the SASSA SRD Grant has become a vital resource for a number of university students looking to pursue tertiary education amid financial constraints.

University students who qualify for the SASSA SRD Grant often struggle to juggle academics and financial instability at the same time. This is where the SRD grant comes in to save the day, providing students with the financial assistance they need to pursue their studies.

However, many students who receive the SRD Grant by SASSA are unclear as to whether they qualify for bursaries, loans or other forms of financial aid.

That’s why, in this article, we provide you with everything you need to know about the SASSA SRD Grant as a student.

Table of Contents

sassa srd grant

What Are the Requirements for the SASSA SRD Grant?

The SASSA SRD Grant was initially introduced to ease the financial burdens of those impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and has since been extended to 31 March 2025

Designed to assist those who aren’t eligible for other social grants, the SASSA SRD Grant is paid to individuals on a monthly basis and aims to provide financial support to those in need. 

In terms of general requirements, you’ll have to fall within the below criteria in order to qualify for the SASSA Grant:

  • You are a resident of South Africa, a refugee and asylum seeker or a special permit holder.
  • You are between the ages of 18 and 60 years old.
  • You are unemployed.
  • You are not the recipient of additional financial support from any one of the official programmes offered by the government.
  • You are not currently registered with NSFAS.
  • You are not eligible for the UIF payment.
  • You meet the requirements for the means test.

Do NSFAS Students Qualify for the SASSA SRD Grant?

The short answer is no, NSFAS students do not qualify for the SASSA SRD Grant. If you were accepted by NSFAS, you are exempted from the grant. This is because you are already receiving the financial assistance you need to pursue higher education and live your life as a student.

Can I Apply for NSFAS If I Receive the SASSA SRD Grant?

If you’re a current beneficiary of a SASSA Grant (for example, the Child Support Grant or Disability Grant), you automatically qualify for NSFAS funding on financial grounds. However, this doesn’t mean that you’ll get the bursary, as you’ll still need to meet the criteria outlined by NSFAS.

Are you a SASSA Grant beneficiary eager to apply for NSFAS? Our comprehensive guide has everything you need to know.

sassa srd grant beneficiary filling out bursary application form

Can I Get a Bursary If I Receive the SASSA SRD Grant?

Yes, you can get a bursary if you are a beneficiary of the SASSA SRD Grant. Students who are currently receiving the SRD Grant are considered as disadvantaged, which is one of the requirements for many bursaries in South Africa.

All you need to do when you send your application is send proof that you are a SASSA Grant recipient (such as the grant letter and other SASSA details) and you’re good to go. It’s important to remember that your financial income isn’t the only requirement. Just as with NSFAS, you’ll need to make sure that you meet all the criteria for the bursary you’re applying for. 

If you’re looking to apply for a bursary in South Africa, be sure to take a look at the list of bursaries available on our Bursaries website.

Will I Be Eligible for Student Loans If I Receive the SASSA SRD Grant?

If you’re receiving the SASSA SRD Grant, you’ll need to consider the kind of loan it is and where you’re getting it from before applying. Some study loan providers might look at your income, including the grant, to decide if you qualify. However, this isn’t always the case. It’s best to talk to the institutions or the loan providers to see how getting the SRD Grant might affect your loan application.

Will Receiving the SASSA SRD Grant Affect My Academic Progress or Enrollment Status?

No, receiving the SASSA SRD Grant should not affect your academic progress or enrollment status directly. However, it’s essential to manage your finances responsibly to ensure you can cover all necessary expenses related to your education.

student filling out funding application after receiving sassa srd grant

Do I Need to Declare the SASSA SRD Grant When Applying for Financial Aid or Bursaries?

Yes, it’s important to declare any financial assistance you receive, including the SASSA SRD Grant, when applying for financial aid or bursaries. Failure to disclose this information could result in penalties or disqualification from receiving additional assistance in the future.

What Happens If My Financial Situation Improves While Receiving the SASSA SRD Grant?

If you find that your financial situation has improved significantly, you’ll no longer meet the criteria for the grant. If this is the case, it’s advisable to notify SASSA of these changes in your circumstances in order to avoid any potential issues or complications.

How Long Can I Receive the SASSA SRD Grant as a University Student?

The duration in which you receive the SASSA SRD Grant depends on any changes that occur with your financial situation or government policies. 

For example, while studying, you may get a paid internship or a part-time job that pays more than the SRD Grant, in which case, you no longer need the funding. Or, the government may decide to stop issuing the grant.  

Whatever the case may be, it’s important to stay informed about any updates or changes to the SRD Grant to ensure you receive the support you need.

student applying for the sassa srd grant through whatsapp

How Do I Apply for the SASSA SRD Grant?

Want to apply for the SASSA SRD Grant as a student? You’ll first need to see if you meet the minimum requirements before you can start applying.

Meet all the requirements? Great! Then it’s time to apply! To apply for the SRD Grant, you’ll need to follow the steps below:

Step 1: Choose Your Method of Application

You have two options to apply for the SRD grant: through WhatsApp or the SASSA official website. Remember, you can only apply once using one method. Applying multiple times won’t speed up the process.

Applying online:

  • Visit the SASSA official website at srd.sassa.gov.za/said.
  • Find the “How do I apply for this SRD Grant” section and click “Click here to apply online.”
  • Enter your mobile number registered under your name.
  • Click “Send SMS.”
  • You’ll receive an OTP code on your phone.
  • Enter the code on the website and click “Verify Pin.”
  • Continue to Step 2 below.

Applying through WhatsApp:

  • Save the SRD WhatsApp number 082 046 8553 in your contacts.
  • Send a message to the saved number.
  • Provide the requested personal information in the chat.
  • You’ll get an OTP code, a reference number and the SRD website link.
  • Click the link, enter the OTP and click “verify”.
  • Provide your ID number and surname.
  • Confirm that your details match those in the WhatsApp chat.
  • Continue to Step 2 below.
student applying for sassa srd grant at library

Step 2: Agree to the Terms and Conditions

Read and agree to the terms and conditions of consent and declaration, as well as those related to the SASSA SRD Grant.

Step 3: Fill Out Your Personal Details

Provide your ID number, full name, gender, residential address, contact details, employment and financial information as well as any supporting documents requested by SASSA.

Step 4: Select Your Preferred Payment Method

For new applicants:

  • Choose between “Cash Send” or “Bank Account”.
  • If selecting a “Bank Account”, provide bank details.
  • If choosing “Cash Send”, provide your mobile number.

For existing applicants:

Confirm existing bank account details or update if necessary.

Step 5: Confirmation Message

You’ll receive an SMS confirming your banking details. This means your application is active.

Step 6: SASSA Verifications Process

SASSA will verify your information from government databases, including your ID, personal details, employment and financial information. They’ll conduct fraud risk assessments. Once verified, they’ll approve or decline your application. That completes the process.

student checking sassa srd grant status

How Do I Check the Status of My SASSA SRD Status Grant?

After you’ve submitted your application, you can check its progress to see whether it’s been approved, declined or what the current status is. If you’ve been approved, you should regularly check the status of your upcoming grant payments and their dates to stay updated. You can check your SASSA SRD Grant status through the following methods:

What Happens If My SASSA SRD Grant Application is Rejected?

If SASSA rejects your SRD Grant application, don’t worry! You can ask them to take another look. First, take a look at why SASSA rejected your application and fix any mistakes if you can. If you believe you qualify for a reapplication, then you can resubmit your application on the SASSA website.

To reapply, you’ll need to provide the same details as before, including:

  • Your name
  • Contact details (mobile number)
  • ID number
  • Bank account details

SASSA will then review your application a second time and confirm whether it has been approved or not. 

student applying for funding with fundi

Get Funding with Fundi

If you’re a student in need of financial assistance, consider acquiring a study loan from Fundi! Fundi offers funding to students that cover a range of expenses—from textbooks, tuition, study devices and more! 

Use the Fundi Loan Calculator to get a better idea of how Fundi can assist you in achieving your dreams.

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