Welfare assistance essential for students’ success

Ms Emily Yam1, Mr Hassan Riaz2

1ANU Students’ Association, Canberra, Australia, 2ANU Postgraduate and Research Students’ Association, Canberra, Australia

Students often quote lack of time and money as main reasons why they are unable to maintain healthy eating habits. ANUSA has identified this as a big issue, as students’ welfare is the foundation of their success at university. To encourage healthy eating habits amongst students, ANUSA has introduced different programs and events to give students access to free and cheap food on campus.  One of the programs we offer is our Student Meals Program, which allows students in need free breakfasts, lunch and dinner vouchers. ANUSA also runs the Brian Kenyon Student Space (BKSS), where students can access free coffee, tea, and cheap snacks from 8am to 8pm. ANUSA Clubs and Societies also host and free barbeques every Thursday afternoon.  If a student is facing a problem, they would likely speak to a Student Assistance Officer at the ANUSA office, and hence the ANUSA office also stocks pantry supplies, toiletries and grocery vouchers for students in need.  We also run Student Bites, where a local produce company delivers their excess produce to us, and students can fill a bag full of produce for a gold coin donation. During the semester, we also run cooking classes from the BKSS to teach students how to cook cheap, healthy meals.  If food assistance isn’t adequate, ANUSA has different grants available where successful applicants can get money instead, if they are facing financial hardship. This presentation aims to show the effectiveness of our programs at ANU, and how important it is to have these supports available for students in need.


Emily is an ANU Alumni, and is the Student Assistance Officer at the Australian National University Students’ Association (ANUSA). ANUSA is the peak representative body for all undergraduate students at ANU with approximately 11,000 members. Emily assists undergraduate students with issues pertaining to their academic performance, financial circumstances and personal matters.She is interested in mental health promotion and aims to centre her projects around mental health awareness.

Hassan is the Student Assistance Officer for both undergraduate and postgraduate student associations at ANU. He was a postgraduate student and PARSA Environmental Officer at ANU prior to starting his role with ANUSA and PARSA. He has also served as an executive of the Council of International Students Australia- the peak body for international students in Australia. Being the recipient of residential scholarship, he has keen interest in residential campus life. In his current role, he seeks gathering information regarding student welfare from diverse sources and directs his energy to consolidate this information to make it presentable for students and other stakeholders.


The Australian and New Zealand Student Services Association Inc. (ANZSSA) is a professional association for people with an interest in the role of support services in post secondary education.

For more information, please visit ANZSSA website by anzssa.com.


ISANA International Education Association is the representative body for professionals in Australia and New Zealand who work in international student services, advocacy, teaching and policy development in international education.

For more information, please visit the ISANA website at www.isana.org.au.

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