Department of Social Affairs

Welcome to the page of the Social Department!

The AStA Department of Social Affairs is currently headed by Katharina Bornemann.
We are here to help you with all social questions that arise during your studies. We provide information on our homepage, during our office hours and by email. For more information, see the links below:

If you have any further questions, you can reach us during our office hours by phone or at the AStA: Counselling for study and social issues

You can find more contact options, office hours and addresses here.

Information from the Social Department on the Covid-19 crisis

In the following section you will find some information, tips and links on the subject of finances, work, social benefits etc., summarized with regard to the question of what will change as a result of Covid-19. You will also find a list of counselling centres and offers of help for if you find yourself in a stressful situation. No claim to completeness!
If you have any questions, please contact me at!

Studentenwerk Emergency Fund.
The Studentenwerk has set up a support students who have lost their part-time job because of Corona, offering an emergency payment of 500 euros. Contact the Studentenwerk by mail for this.

BAföG and scholarships

The Federal Ministry of Education has clarified that Corona should not result in any disadvantages for BAföG recipients. This also applies in particular to certificates submitted after a deadline:

“The Federal Ministry has made it clear to the federal states responsible for BAföG implementation and their education funding offices that BAföG must continue to be paid in pandemic-related case constellations. Students and pupils who are dependent on benefits under the Federal Training Assistance Act (BAföG) should not suffer any financial disadvantages if their training institution is temporarily closed or the start of the semester is postponed due to the COVID 19 pandemic.
The competent state authorities have therefore been instructed to provisionally continue to grant all benefits already approved under the BAföG if the commencement or continuation of education is temporarily impossible because schools or higher education institutions are closed or the start of the 2020 summer semester is postponed.”

Tip:If your parents have lost income due to Corona, it may be worthwhile to submit a new BAföG application (if you have not received anything so far) or submit an updated application to receive more (if you are already receiving BAföG).
The regulations apply accordingly to scholarships from the Begabtenförderungswerke.

You can find the details here.

If you have specific questions about your individual situation, it is best to contact the Studentenwerk.

Some good information can also be found at the RefRat of the Humboldt University Berlin.

Supplementary financing for students with children
Families with low incomes can apply for the Kinderzuschlag (KiZ) of 185 euros per month. Until now, the average income of the previous six months was the decisive metric for this. In the context of the Covid-19 crisis, the federal government is planning an emergency KiZ:

“From April onwards, families applying for the KiZ no longer have to prove their income of the previous six months, but only of the previous one month before the application. This regulation is to apply for a limited period until 30 September 2020. So it may be worthwhile to apply from 1 April if you have already had a significant loss of earnings in March.”

More info and application here.

Short-time allowance
Retroactive to 01.03., the legislator has changed the regulations on short-time allowance. This is applied for by the employer and amounts to 60 per cent (67 per cent for parents) of the net salary if at least 10 per cent of the employees are affected by the loss of work. As a rule, however, only employees subject to social security contributions can benefit from short-time allowance. Unfortunately, it is of no use to the mini-jobber who has been made redundant.

More information here.

Housing benefit
Housing allowance is only paid to students if they are not entitled to BAföG, e.g. if they are studying in a non-eligible second degree programme.
It therefore makes no sense for most students to apply, even in times of Corona.

Notice of termination due to arrears.
Normally, your landlord can terminate your tenancy if you are in arrears with the rent. This has now been restricted for the period from 1 April to 30 June. If you can prove that Corona has caused you a loss of earnings and that you are therefore unable to pay rent, you may not be given notice. However, you still have to pay the rent, but later. If you are currently having problems paying your rent, e.g. because of a job loss, the first thing to do is contact your landlord. Otherwise, it is best to contact the Mieterbund.

More information and useful FAQs:

Deutsches Studentenwerk:

fzs – freier zusammenschluss von student*innenschaften:

Telegram channel with info on Corona:

Telegram channel of the AStA Göttingen:

Counselling and support services:

Studentenwerk Göttingen
the social service, psycho-social counselling (PSB) etc. can still be reached by phone and email:

Telephone services:

You can find support in crisis situations without an appointment under the following telephone numbers:

Available around the clock:

Help hotline “Violence against women”: 08000 116 016 (free of charge)
Help hotline “Pregnant women in distress”: 0800 40 40 020 (free of charge)
Drugs & Addiction Hotline: 01805 313031 (chargeable. 0.14 €/min. from landlines, mobile phones max. 0.42 €/min.)
Protestant/Catholic pastoral care telephone: 0800 111 0 111, 0800 111 0 222, 116 123 (free of charge)
Muslim pastoral care telephone: 030 44 35 09 821 (connection costs only)

Consultation hours:
Corona crisis line for the psychological consequences of the Corona pandemic of the Centre for Psychotherapy of the University of Frankfurt: 069 798 46666 (connection costs only, from 30.03.2020)
– For the general public: Mon-Fri 3 p.m.-2 p.m., Sat/Sun 4 p.m.-8 p.m.; For children, young people and parents: Mon-Fri 9 a.m.-1 p.m.

  • Nightline’s listening and information phone by students for students: Telephone numbers and accessibility here.
  • Children’s and young people’s telephone “NummerGegenKummer”: 116 111 (free of charge, Mon-Sat 2-8 p.m.)
  • Parents’ hotline: 0800 111 0 550 (for parents in stressful situations, free of charge, Mon-Fri 9-11 a.m., Tue/Thu 5-7 p.m.)
  • Sexual abuse help line: 0800 22 55 530 (free of charge, Mon/Wed/Fri 9am-1pm, Tues/Thu 3pm-8pm)
  • Information hotline on depression: 0800 33 44 533 (free of charge, Mon/Thurs/Thurs 1-5 p.m., Wed/Fri: 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.)
  • Information hotline on eating disorders: 02 21 89 20 31 (connection costs only, Mon-Thu 10am-2pm, Fri-Sun 10am-6pm)
  • Confidential telephone “Jewish hotline”: 0211 4698520, 0211 4698521 (connection costs only, Mon-Fri 10am-6pm, Sun 1pm-4pm)

Online offers:
Help hotline Violence against women.
– Chat counselling, mail counselling, counselling in sign language, offers in plain language

Help hotline Pregnant in distress
– Mail counselling, chat counselling (by appointment)

Drug and addiction support
– Local drop-in centres:
– Supervised chat (Freundeskreise für Suchtkrankenhilfe): day 19-21 h)
– Counselling chat of the Catholic addiction support (Caritas):
– Child and youth helpline “NummerGegenKummer”:

– Contact points for queer people:
– Protestant/Catholic telephone counselling:

Offers for psychological stress (not a substitute for therapy!):
iFightDepression: registration by mail via the Stiftung Deutsche Depressionshilfe (accessible for six weeks without therapeutic accompaniment):
– Various training courses for students, provided you are not in an acute crisis:
– Certified psychological online counsellors:
– Online counselling by Deutsche Angsthilfe: