What Is It?
The SYKES Employee Relief Fund assists employees or eligible dependents who are experiencing serious financial hardship and are unable to afford housing, utilities, and other basic living expenses because of a natural disaster; life-threatening illness or injury; death; or other catastrophic or extreme circumstance beyond the employee’s control. The Fund and grants are administered and managed by a nonprofit charitable organization to ensure applicant anonymity and provide experienced support.
Life-Threatening or Serious Illness or Injury
Other Catastrophic or Extreme Circumstances
SYKES partners with E4E Relief to ensure applicant anonymity and administrative expertise.
- You must be an employee of the Company residing in the United States or Canada
- You must have been employed by the Company for at least 30 days prior to the situation that has resulted in the financial hardship
- If you work for the Company less than full-time, you must have worked for the Company for at least 120 hours
- In the case of death of an eligible employee, you must be a surviving spouse or child of the employee
- You must be experiencing financial hardship as a result of a situation described below, that results in an inability to pay for basic living expenses
Your situation MUST fall into one of the following four categories:
- Natural Disaster: A wildfire, flood, tornado, hurricane, severe storm, earthquake, or similar natural disaster that has damaged or destroyed your primary residence. Grants may not be used to repair other property and cannot be used to replace non-essential items, such as electronics. Photographs or insurance reports may be required.
- Life-Threatening or Serious Illness or Injury: You, your spouse or your child is diagnosed with or suffers a life-threatening or serious illness or injury that results in an inability to pay for basic living expenses. The Fund is not a substitute for medical insurance; employees do not automatically qualify for a grant when they, or their dependents, are diagnosed with or suffer a life-threatening or serious illness or injury. Doctor confirmation or medical documentation will be required.
- Death: The employee, the employee’s spouse or the employee’s child dies, and the resulting loss of income or the cost of funeral expenses or medical bills results in an inability to pay for basic living expenses. Grants may be used for funeral expenses or other basic life necessities.
- Other Catastrophic or Extreme Circumstances: Including, but not limited to: fire, major home damage that could not be prevented, and a serious crime (for example, robbery, arson, assault, domestic abuse, or another reportable crime) committed against the employee, that results in an inability to pay for basic living expenses. Catastrophic or extreme circumstances do not include: job loss, reduced work hours or pay, credit card bills, home foreclosure, or accumulated financial distress. Police, fire or other official incident report may be required.
- The natural disaster, illness/injury, death, or other catastrophic or extreme circumstance must have happened within the past 12 months, but not prior to the time that the applicant was an employee.
- You may apply for assistance no more than five times in a 24-month period, and you may receive assistance no more than three times per 24-month period
The maximum grant amount is $1,500. The maximum award is not guaranteed; and, in some cases, no amount or a lesser amount will be awarded. In most cases payments are made directly to vendors as bill payments.
Grants will be made only to help pay for limited types of essential living expenses, which are:
- Rent, mortgage or other housing payments
- Temporary housing and security deposits for new housing
- Essential utility bills (electricity, heat, water, and work-essential utilities)
- Funeral expenses or grave markers
- Medical expenses (bills), not eligible for reimbursement or covered by insurance
- Minor home repairs needed to maintain home safety
- Travel for minor children required to relocate following the death of parent/guardian
- Car payments or repairs
- Furniture or appliances
Grants will not be made to pay for the following expenses:
- Legal fees
- Insurance premiums or deductibles
- Non-essential utilities (satellite / cable TV, etc.)
- Credit card debt
- Accidental damages due to negligence
How Can I Apply?
If you are a current SYKES employee or an immediate family member of an employee experiencing serious financial hardship and are unable to afford housing, utilities, and other basic living expenses because of a qualifying event, begin by clicking the link below. This will take you to the application portal for the SYKES Employee Relief Fund located within E4E Relief's website. After completing a relief grant application, our nonprofit partner reviews your application to determine how the Fund can make the greatest impact. The application is anonymous to other SYKES employees and, in most cases, grant funds are paid directly to vendors.
- What is a relief grant?
- A relief grant is financial assistance provided to an employee who has applied to the Employee Relief Fund in response to a specific event that has resulted in financial difficulties. Grants are awarded only when specific criteria are met and are reviewed by an independent committee at E4E Relief.
- How is a grant given out?
- Grants are paid in the form of bill payment directly to a vendor (for example, the electric company or the phone company). When applying you must submit copies of your outstanding bills and, if approved, E4E Relief will send payments directly to those companies with your account number. In some circumstances, payment will be made directly to the applicant.
- Who is the recipient of a grant?
- Employees who are approved for support will receive notification of the grants paid to their vendors on their behalf. In some cases, such as evacuation needs, a payment may be made directly to an employee for food, shelter and/or clothing.
- If I have questions about my grant application, who do I contact?
- E4E Relief administers the Employee Relief Program. All questions about applications should be directed to the Foundation via email@example.com or by calling (844) 345-0774.
- How long is the wait time on an application decision?
- Generally, grant decisions are made within two business days of a completed (all documentation received) application. If additional documentation and paperwork is required, a decision may be delayed. E4E Relief will contact you if additional supporting documentation is required.
- Who is E4E Relief?
- E4E Relief is a 501(c)(3) public charity dedicated to partnering with companies to support their employees during times of extreme financial hardship. With over 15 years’ experience, E4E Relief is the leading provider of employee relief fund nationwide.
- Is my contribution tax-deductible?
- Payroll deductions and donations to the SYKES Employee Relief Fund are eligible for US charitable tax deduction by the IRS. Only a CPA can give tax advice. E4E Relief is a 501(c)3 public charity and will send annual tax receipts to those who participate. At this time, contributions made by Canadian employees to the SYKES Employee Relief fund are not tax deductible.
- What is the selection process?
- Applications are submitted via a confidential web portal to E4E Relief and are then reviewed by Grant Specialist that review the materials and makes grant decisions. Those that meet all of the eligibility requirements will receive support.
- What portion of my deduction goes directly towards grants?
- SYKES pays for all fees and application expenses associated with the review and administration process undertaken by E4E Relief. 100% of your donation goes directly to funding grants.
- Are there any fees associated with donations or grants?
- Applicable credit card fees are applied to donations made to the fund online. Contributions made via check, payroll deduction or electronic funds transfer are not subject to fees. While E4E Relief charges per application for review, SYKES’ contributions ensure that these fees are covered. 100 percent of your contribution goes toward awarding grants.