My best time during my campus stay in Kenya was the beginning of the semester. I was always “loaded” like people in campus used to put it, and not with ammunition but with cash. I come from a fairly humble background and as such my parents were not the source of this money- no! I had applied for a HELB loan in Kenya. HELB stands for “Higher Education Loans Board”. The government of Kenya has gone out of its way to ensure that campus students in Kenya are able to cater for their own needs while in campus by giving these HELB loans to qualified students. HELB was initially for government sponsored students in Kenya admitted via the Joint Admissions Board, but even the self-sponsored students are eligible to apply these days. The board gives a maximum loan of KSH 60,000 and a minimum of KSH 40, 000 per academic year. The money is split in equal portions for the two semesters. The money is usually sent to the student’s personal account at the beginning of the semester. For the self-sponsored students in Kenya however, the money is sent directly to the school account and primarily caters for the school fees.
Applying for a HELB loan in Kenya is not as hard as it used to be especially with the introduction of online applications. The form can be accessed at the loans Board official website, www.helb.co.ke. The downloaded forms are then filled and submitted to the HELB offices in Kenya located in Anniversary towers along Monrovia lane in Nairobi. HELB offices are near Koinange Street Opposite University of Nairobi in Nairobi. The following credentials are required in order to apply for a HELB loan:
a) A national identity card b) A Kenya Revenue Authority pin number c) A bank account d) Your parents’ identity cards and pay slips. e) Parents death certificates for the orphans
To apply for HELB loan online in Kenya, go to the board’s official website and create an account. Then click on the home page and click, “fill the application form correctly”. Fill in the particulars ensuring that you save every step. You can then go back to the homepage to view the application history so as to ensure that all details have been properly filled in. Once you have reviewed your details return to the homepage and print out the form. Ensure that the necessary signatories have signed the form before you return it to the HELB offices in Nairobi.
Later on, you are contacted on the success or rejection of your loan application. Sometimes you are given a lesser amount than that which you applied for. Some students also get HELB bursaries in Kenya. HELB really helps out- campus students can attest to that.