Rapid Response Program
When member’s experience personal crisis or an emergency situation, they may be overwhelmed by their circumstances. Recognizing that unforeseen financial emergencies may occur for members; Blind LGBT Pride has established an emergency fund to help meet the immediate needs of members experiencing crisis situations. When it is determined that a member is experiencing a specific financial need because of a single traumatic event or an on-going crisis, the Rapid Response Program can provide timely support to assist.
Each member’s circumstances are carefully considered, and evaluators are mindful of the sensitivity of each situation and that the member may need multiple sources of support. All information shared by a member requesting emergency funding support is confidential. Information about the member or their circumstances will only be shared with third parties who have a legitimate need to be informed of the member’s situation and only at the request or explicit permission of the member seeking emergency funding support.
Emergency funding is designed to provide temporary, short-term, financial assistance to members who are struggling with debilitating financial circumstances. Provided in the form of one-time awards (typically not exceeding $1,000), emergency funding is not intended to provide ongoing relief for recurring expenses, and these awards are not loans that members are expected to repay. However, awards from these funds may impact other benefits that a member may receive from other sources.
Potential reasons for awarding emergency funding include, but are not limited to:
To minimize immediate needs of members caused by acute financial stress.
Support for temporary housing, and/or other essential needs such as food, due to displacement by fire or another unforeseen environmental hazard.
Support shelter for a member in a dangerous situation due to acts of violence or other victimization.
To fund travel or transportation of a member due to family emergency, crisis, or death.
To provide for short term financial assistance due to unusual or unforeseen medical expenses.
Criteria for Award Distribution:
Each emergency funding request is reviewed individually. Many factors will be considered in making a decision to approve or deny a request. These factors include, but are not limited to:
The nature and urgency of the member’s emergency.
The totality of the member’s hardships.
Other resources or support that the member may or may not have available to them.
Information a member may be asked to submit
When a member seeks support through the Rapid Response Program, they may be asked to submit the following:
A brief written statement explaining the emergency situation or unusual or unforeseen expenses.
A list of specific expenses to be covered by the award and the member’s total cost incurred because of the emergency; and
An explanation of their financial situation including sources of income and other available funding, if any.
Award amounts and disbursement
Awards will not typically exceed $1,000, except in extraordinary circumstances. As in most cases, funds will be disbursed to the member in the form of reimbursement. Once documentation has been received processing awards will typically take three to five business days, if not sooner.