In 2022, much of the world seemed to have moved on from COVID-19. Fewer people wore masks, travel returned to normal, and we were again live and in person. Yet the pandemic continued to affect millions of individuals, creating health issues and financial hardship around the globe. Fortunately, some of those individuals had a place to turn to for help: their employers.
Here’s one example, from a woman in Florida whose partner was diagnosed with COVID-19. He was forced to quarantine and miss several weeks of work, and the loss of income strained their financial security and created a cascade of negative events. She couldn’t pay for day care. She was behind on all her major bills. She could barely keep food in her home. She felt, in her own words, “hopeless.” She knew her company offered an employee relief program, providing tax-free grants to employees facing disasters or personal hardship, because she had needed it several years before, when she experienced an unexpected loss of child support. Once again, she decided to ask for help. She applied and was awarded a grant to get her back on solid financial footing.
“I can't express enough how much I appreciate my employer offering this help and to everyone that has donated to help those in need,” she wrote in a note of thanks. “Times get hard for almost all of us, and it's nice to know we have somewhere to turn that isn't going to ultimately put us in a tougher situation or debt. Thank you for helping me regain stability and catch up on my bills after facing a lot of financial hardship that could have devastated my family without it.”
She wasn’t alone in 2022. In fact, our research shows COVID-19 continued to be one of the top reasons individuals around the world applied for employee relief this past year – proof that the pandemic continues to take a financial toll and that companies have an ongoing opportunity to help.
This is the power of emergency financial relief, and it’s why I’ve done this work for over a decade. Emergency financial relief offers hope during challenging times. It extends a financial lifeline that allows employees to get back on their feet and improves their mental and financial well-being. The result is a more productive, engaged and loyal workforce, which is vital to every business.
If you’re looking for ways to enhance your business in the new year, I encourage you to consider an emergency financial relief program. It’s an investment in your greatest asset – your people – and it makes your company a better place to work.