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Carolinas Credit Union Foundation announces COVID-19 relief program for CU employees

Tuesday, April 7, 2020   (0 Comments)
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Updated 4/9/20 at 12:21 PM


Earlier this week, the Carolinas Credit Union Foundation announced the activation of its Disaster Relief Aid Program to support credit union employees in the Carolinas through COVID-19 Relief Grants. Credit unions have already stepped up to contribute to the fund, including State Employees’ CU with $250,000, Coastal with $50,000 and Sharonview with $35,000 from its Charitable Donation Account proceeds.

The intent of the Foundation’s COVID-19 Relief Grants is to help credit union employees pay for essential living expenses such as rent/mortgage for a primary residence, utilities, and food when there is a loss of income in the household related to COVID-19. These grants are for individuals who are experiencing significant financial hardship and are designed to supplement stimulus funds, PTO from your credit union and unemployment from a spouse/partner.

“Even if credit union employees are physically well, we recognize that many in the credit union community of the Carolinas are facing great financial difficulties triggered by business disruptions and job losses in the household,” noted Lauren Whaley, president of the Carolinas Credit Union Foundation. “These relief grants are for our hardest hit credit union employees who have limited savings and are unable to cover all of their expenses each month.”  

Application Process & Eligibility:

To be eligible for a grant, a credit union employee must:

  • Be experiencing significant financial hardship due to loss of income in the household related to this pandemic
  • Work for a credit union headquartered in North Carolina or South Carolina.

Application forms (PDF format) are available through your credit union employer or you can request the form directly from the Foundation at DisasterRelief@carolinasfoundation.org. This application will be treated in a confidential manner by the Carolinas Credit Union Foundation; however, non-identifying statistical information will be reported to the credit union and others on a periodic basis.

Grant Amounts & Fulfillment:

Applicants will be asked to include a “requested grant amount”, which will be supported by the detailed Financial Hardship Worksheet in the application. The requested grant amount should be based on expenses an applicant cannot pay due to changes in their monthly household income and should help cover two months of expenses. The Financial Hardship Worksheet includes a breakdown of monthly household income currently and prior to COVID-19. Additionally, a breakdown of current monthly expenses is required as well as available savings/liquid assets. 

COVID-19 Relief Grants will be given to credit union employees on a first-come, first-served basis and will be disbursed in two phases. The maximum for a “Phase I” grant is $1,000 and an individual may reapply for a “Phase II” grant after 60 days. If funds are available, the Phase II grant will be processed with a maximum of $1,000. The total maximum for any one household is $2,000. Once an application is submitted to the Foundation, it will take approximately five business days for processing and approval. Approved funds will be issued through electronic transfer to the applicant’s checking or savings account.

"It is commendable that the Carolinas Foundation is coordinating the effort to assist credit union employees and their families," said SECU President and CEO Mike Lord in his letter to the Foundation. "We are all in this together and SECU is happy to help support credit union employees and their families in their time of need—"People Helping People," it's part of who we are as fellow credit union employees!"

Related: SECU and SECU Foundation join efforts to provide $10 million for COVID-19 disaster relief

The Foundation’s Disaster Relief Fund has aided the credit union community after numerous events with the simple goal of helping credit union employees get back on their feet. Dollar-for-dollar, more than $2 million has been raised and disbursed since its establishment. Currently, the Foundation has $415,000 in its Disaster Relief Fund thanks in part to the recent support from Sharonview FCU, Coastal Credit Union, and State Employees’ Credit Union. If your credit union is so inclined to help, please reach out to the Foundation directly. Individuals can also make tax-deductible donations online here.

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To learn more about the Carolinas Credit Union Foundation’s COVID-19 Relief Grants, please visit carolinasfoundation.org/covid-19 or contact Lauren Whaley at lwhaley@carolinasfoundation.org.

A list of Frequently Asked Questions is periodically being updated, please visit carolinasfoundation.org/covid-19-relief-grant-faq.

Correction: Donation amount reported on April 7 has been updated to include the recent contributions from Coastal Credit Union and State Employees' Credit Union.


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