With the coronavirus pandemic, many foreign students are in a precarious situation in Ireland – without money, without classes and unable to return home.
Despite the Irish government offering financial aid to workers who lost their jobs during the crisis, many foreigners are unable to claim the benefit because they do not have a PPSN (Personal Public Service Number).
To help foreigners in this situation, a Facebook group called COVID Ireland English Language Student Solidarity (CIELS) was created. Useful information is shared there for foreigners experiencing difficulties in Ireland. Among them, there is a guide on how to apply for PPSN without having a job offer or an employer letter.
To do this, you need to send the following scanned documents to firstname.lastname@example.org. Signatures must be made in pen, not digitally.
- 1Form REG1, completed and signed;
In question # 15, which asks the reason for the request, it is necessary to mention the Supplementary Welfare Allowance. You will not be applying for the benefit, just using it as an “excuse” to obtain the PPSN.
- Form SWA1, completed and signed;
Leave the PPSN field blank. The Social Security Number of the country of origin can be filled in with the Brazilian CPF. In parts 2 and 4, you do not need to enter the flatmate data, if you have one.
- Copy of passport or identification document;
- Proof of residence
According to reports from other foreigners, an account of the residence where you live with a letter from the owner is sufficient to prove the address.
It is important to remember that the €350 / week aid paid by the Irish government is intended only for workers who lost their jobs during the crisis. Students who are not working or newcomers to Ireland can apply for Urgent Needs Payment if they are in a critical situation, with no money to support themselves.
To do this, you must have a PPSN and go to the Community Welfare Service closest to your address to request assistance. Some Brazilians in the CIELS Facebook group are sharing their reports on the process.