Aid funds pay for education costs of 9/11 families

September 13, 2002

A student aid fund set up for families hit by the September 11 attacks has handed out almost $1 million (£640,000) in loan relief and scholarships over the past ten months.

More than 50 partners of people killed, declared missing or permanently disabled in the attacks have been helped by the Sallie Mae 911 Education Fund to pay their student loans. In addition, two dozen children of those who died or were severely injured have received scholarships for post-secondary education.

The scholarships have been made available to children of rescue workers who were lost in the line of duty, as well as to children of victims killed on airplanes and in the World Trade Center.

The fund was set up last October with $1.5 million from the charitable arm of Sallie Mae, the US's main commercial education loan provider, to respond not only to the repercussions of September 11 but to other national emergencies and natural disasters.

After September 11, an array of scholarship schemes was set up by organisations including the Children's Aid Society, the DaimlerChrysler Corporation Fund, Nokia and the United Negro College Fund.

New York State guaranteed an education at its state and New York City universities and offered private higher education opportunities to the families of those killed or seriously injured.

In April, the UK-based World Trade Center Disaster Fund announced 70 scholarships worth more than $3 million for the children of victims to study in the UK.

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