Facing challenges?

We offer individual social counselling services

Your student days are a very significant episode in your life. What are the challenges that await you? A new city, your own apartment, strangers, little money. And you are expected to cope with all this alone? You don't have to! We offer guidance, we support you in making decisions and we promote your independence. In emergency situations we are able to help you with free meals and financial aid.

Please feel free to ask us anything! Our social counselling services are confidential, free of charge and – if needed – in English.

We are there for you:

Admission to a university depends on more than just grades. We want people with disabilities and chronic illnesses to have easier access to university. Please contact us!

Studying with Disabilities – Information and Advice Center
Where can people with restricted mobility live without restricted access? What forms of academic adjustment are available? The "Studying with Disabilities" Information and Advice Centre of the German Studentenwerk e.V. (Deutsches Studentenwerk - DSW) provides comprehensive information about studying with disabilities in Germany. A great deal of information is so far only available in German.

best2 - studying with impairments
Information brochure of the DSW with data on the situation of students with disabilities and chronic illness (2019 | English).

Representatives of the universities for students with disabilities

University of Potsdam
University of Applied Sciences Potsdam
Film University Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF
Brandenburg University of Applied Sciences
Technical University of Applied Science Wildau

Who is eligible?
The housing benefit is a state aid granted for the payment of the rent. It does not contribute to the subsistence. Therefore you have to substantiate that you have a regular income. As a benchmark, the unemployment benefit II standard rate (the normal requirement level 1 comes to 409 Euro) plus 2/3 of the rent to be paid proved to be helpful.

Students with funding under the Federal Training Assistance Act (BAföG)
Under certain circumstances the housing benefit may be claimed by students who are not entitled to BAföG payments, if they for example have already exceeded the maximum funding period, receive BAföG as fully loan-based financing or if children that are living in the same household were included in the calculation. Please also read the information on the "BAföG” web page.

Note: You may not claim the housing benefit without having applied for BAföG funding first, as BAföG has precedence over the housing benefit. In case the application finds that your parents’ income is too high or you, as a student, are too wealthy, no housing benefit will be granted.

How is the housing benefit calculated?
The number of household members, the size of the apartment, the gross rent without utility costs, the incomes of the household members and the regional rental level are important components for the calculation. You can non-bindingly calculate the estimated housing benefit with the housing benefit calculator.

How is your income taken into account?
The income covers all positive earnings within the meaning of the German Income Tax Act. 
Student loans or other loans are NOT

considered as income. But child benefits, which the parents pass on to their children, are taken into account. The situation is different, if the students have children living in their household: In this case, the child benefits are not taken into account.

Note: The extent to which the income or the money received are taken into account may affect the decision on the application for a housing benefit. In case the application for a housing benefit was rejected because the income is too low, it is recommended to specify all earnings in the course of the plausibility check. In this part of the proceedings loans may for example be recognized or financial autonomy can be substantiated.

Apply for the housing benefit online
You can fill in and print the application form for the housing benefit by the state of Brandenburg online. In case a housing benefit has already been granted, you can also find subsequent applications (applications for continued payment or increase of the housing benefit) on the website of the Brandenburg Ministry of Infrastructure and Agriculture. The following documents are required for the application:

  • Identity card/passport
  • Negative decision on BAföG OR
  • Proof of fully loan-based financing under BAföG
  • Rental agreement, rent receipts and special charges
  • Income tax card or income tax compensation from the previous year
  • Certificate of enrolment

We recommend a personal appointment at our social counselling service for detailed advice regarding the housing benefit.

Do you face a difficult social situation? Then apply for a certificate of eligibility to public housing (WBS) at your local city administration. This gives you the opportunity to find an affordable apartment which is supported by public funds. 

The WBS depends on the income; but child benefit does not count as income. With the application you must submit the following documents regarding your personal life situation:

  • Proof of income covering the last 12 months
  • Approval decision on unemployment benefit or social benefit
  • Approval decision on BAföG or rejection
  • Current certificate of enrolment
  • Proof of maintenance
  • Decision on parental benefit
  • Proof of health, care or pension insurance coverage
  • Pregnancy record booklet, if required
  • Marriage, if applicable (and if the marriage took place in the past five years)
  • Proof of legal separation, if applicable (e.g. amended income tax card, informal confirmation by both partners, application for divorce)

You can find application forms at your local city administration or in the Internet. 

City administration of the state capital PotsdamCity administration of Brandenburg an der HavelCity administration of Wildau

Health insurance
Each student is obliged to prove that he or she is covered by health insurance before the enrolment at the university. Your health insurance issues such a certificate without problems.
The most favourable form of insurance is the family insurance. As a student you receive the services of the health insurance for free, if one parent or your spouse is a member of a statutory health insurance. Students that cannot be covered by a family insurance are obliged to take out a student health insurance, because such an insurance is compulsory until the 14th Semester and at the latest until you reach the age of 30.

Care insurance
The care insurance, which was set up under the umbrella of the statutory health insurance, serves the purpose of hedging risks when long-time care is needed. Usually you are also included in your parents’ family insurance for free up to the age of 25 (plus the time of military and civilian service). After this time, you will have to take out an insurance yourself.

Accident insurance
If you study at a university in the area of competence of the Studentenwerk Potsdam and you have paid your semester fees, you are insured against accidents.

Liability insurance
You are included in your parents’ family liability insurance if you started your studies immediately after your school education and were not employed in between. Please note that military and civilian service are not regarded as employment in this respect. Otherwise you have the possibility to be re-included in your parents’ liability insurance with a 50% surcharge only. There is no need to take on your own liability insurance in these cases.

Home content insurance
Usually you are included in your parents’ home content insurance and do not have to take out your own insurance. However, this only applies if you have an accommodation in the residential halls at the location of the university or have a secondary residence. If you live in your own apartment (principal place of residence) at the location of the university, you should seek to obtain a corresponding insurance coverage.

Your contact

Mitarbeiterporträt von Karolin Kozur
Karolin Kozur
Social counsellor
room: 4.19
+49 331 3706-254
Babelsberger Straße 2