May 20, 2019
Imagine you are on the brink of losing your home. Or car troubles cause you to miss work, putting your job in jeopardy. Do you pay for repairs or buy groceries for your family? These situations are all too real for some members of U-M’s faculty and staff.
U-M’s Emergency Hardship Program offers help in time of hardship. In 2018, the EHP provided 43 grants to employees, totaling $37,930. Every penny of these funds was donated by individuals and community partners.
“This was the year where we saw the greatest number of people in need,” said Tom Waldecker, director of the Faculty and Staff Counseling and Consultation Office and administrator of the program. “Fortunately, we also received an amazing amount of financial support from so many.”
More than 260 university employees donated via the Victors for Michigan campaign. The largest single contribution was made by the University of Michigan Credit Union. In addition to this funding, UMCU was a founding partner for EHP 10 years ago.
“Making a difference in the community is an important focus for UMCU,” says Julie Wigley, vice president of brand and community development at UMCU. “We are so grateful to the people who make this a great place to live. And we’re glad we can provide financial support, workshops, and counseling to those who need a hand.”
UMCU has supported various programs across the university, from the EHP to arts education at the U-M Museum of Art to services and training for Wolverine Pathways families.
In addition to providing grants when appropriate, EHP provides referrals to appropriate university and community resources. On average, the Hardship Program receives over 250 inquiries a year with over 2,500 to date.
“Our ability to support employees is directly related to the generosity of our community. There is clearly a demonstrated need for emergency funds, and it is our mission to provide as much support as possible. We are grateful for the continued support from UMCU and all our donors. We couldn’t do this without you,” Waldecker said.