Pentagon Federal Credit Union Foundation (PenFed Foundation)
The following program was awarded grants as part of the Bob Woodruff Foundation’s second 2020 Expedited Grants Portfolio, addressing urgent needs related to COVID-19.
COVID-19 Emergency Financial Relief Program
Service Area: National
The PenFed Foundation empowers veterans, service members, and their communities with the skills and resources to realize financial stability and opportunity. In our recent research paper, BWF found that before the COVID-19 pandemic, over one-third of post-9/11 veterans reported challenges paying their bills in their first few years after leaving the military, and according to a U.S. Census Bureau study in 2017, half of veterans between the ages of 25 and 54 have less than $3,000 to $4,000 total in their bank accounts. These pre-existing financial concerns, combined with the loss or reduction of income due to COVID-19, leave low- and moderate-income veterans and military families particularly vulnerable to financial instability and crisis. The PenFed Foundation received over 6,000 applications for rent, mortgage, auto loan, and utility assistance within 4 days of opening their COVID-19 Emergency Financial Relief program, indicating an overwhelming and ongoing need in the military veteran population. This BWF grant will provide emergency financial assistance to ensure that 18 post-9/11 veterans experiencing lost or reduced income due to COVID-19 sustain housing and meet their basic needs through the crisis.