Employee Emergency CARE Fund FAQ

Cornell Employee Emergency CARE Fund: Employees Helping Employees



Is my donation tax-deductible?

No. The Employee Emergency CARE Fund provides support more broadly than allowed by the IRS definition of a workplace relief fund, especially to victims of domestic violence, and thus gifts to the fund are not tax deductible.

I donate to Cornell’s United Way campaign. How is this different?

Cornell United Way does great work throughout Tompkins County and beyond -  definitely keep donating to them! The Cornell Employee Emergency CARE Fund is different in that it gives directly to employees, and is open only to Cornell employees. 

Where does the money in the Employee Emergency CARE Fund come from?

The majority of the fund is donated by thoughtful employees who wish to help their colleagues. Cornell does occasionally supplement the fund during periods of crisis.

Where can I go to donate?

Give to the Employee Emergency CARE Fund at https://hr.cornell.edu/carefund/give-care-fund.



Who can apply for an Emergency CARE Fund grant?

Cornell employees who hold a benefits-eligible full or part-time position (including benefits-eligible post-doctoral associates and employees on short-term or long-term disability); and have worked a minimum of six months. Note: Employees on layoff status are not typically covered, but during the COVID-19 crisis, they are eligible to apply to the fund.

Can all Cornell employees access the fund?

Employees paid by Cornell University and in university benefits-eligible positions may apply. Weill Cornell employees do not qualify.

Does this grant help employees affected by COVID-19?

This is an emergency grant fund, which covers emergencies like flood or fire damage to homes, the need to relocate due to a domestic violence crisis, or an unexpected medical crisis that prevents the family from meeting essential needs.  If COVID-19 has been the cause of an extraordinary crisis which causes a major financial burden to the employee and an inability to meet basic needs, an application will be considered. In addition, while employees on layoff status are not typically eligible to apply to the fund, they may do so during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Can retirees apply for a CARE grant?

No. However, Cornell retirees and their dependents may still access the Cornell Faculty and Staff Assistance Program for therapeutic support during times of need. 

Can students apply for this grant?

No. Students with urgent needs can access the CU Emergency Fund, Students Helping Students, and the DACA Renewal Fee Emergency Fund at https://finaid.cornell.edu/special-circumstances/emergency-funds.

Who makes decisions about the grant?

A confidential committee reviews grant applications. It consists of Cornell community members as well as representatives from Human Resources, the Faculty and Staff Assistance Program, and Workforce Policy & Labor Relations.

How much can be received from the grant?

Eligible recipients may receive between $200 and $1500 depending on their circumstances.

Where can I apply for a grant?

You can find the application and information about applying at https://hr.cornell.edu/carefund/apply-care-fund-grant.

How many grants are awarded each year?

The fund typically has enough donations to award 20-25 grants per year.