In an ideal world, every company would offer employees access to relief funds which can cover all the expenses that pop up in the wake of a natural or other disaster. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Even the healthiest relief funds can be stretched in the wake of disaster, leaving companies struggling to make decisions about how to allocate finite funds to an overabundance of deserving employees.
Under trying circumstances, it’s important to remember that no relief fund is going to be able to meet all the needs of every employee who qualifies for a grant. That said, there are ways to ensure that your fund helps the highest number of employees possible. One way is to lower the grant amounts being distributed to give money to more employees. Even small amounts of money that cover the most basic needs can be helpful when facing severe financial hardship.
For large companies operating in locations outside of the affected areas, holding an emergency donation drive is a way to increase the fund significantly in a short period of time. Making a personal plea on behalf of affected employees can get donations flowing in record time. This also goes for high-level executives. Increasing personal donations or pledging to match employee donations, if not already a company practice, can help stretch every dollar. Finally, sometimes the needs of employees facing hardship can be met in ways other than cash grants.
Victims of large-scale disasters are often in need of clothing, food, and other basic necessities that can be acquired through food and clothing drives or donations from local organizations. Companies can help cover emergency shelter needs by providing temporary facilities for affected employees. With some creativity and a real desire to protect one’s employees, even funds that are stretched to the limit can be reconfigured, topped up, or used in creative ways to support those in need.