The National Vision Crisis Relief Fund provides short-term assistance as a non-taxable grant to cover unforeseen expenses related to the following qualifying events:
- Disasters including natural disasters, government-declared emergencies or personal disaster, such as a house fire. Grants may provide assistance for basic expenses, such as temporary shelter, clothing, food, transportation expenses, and other necessities that are not immediately provided by emergency community services and insurance.
- Financial hardships resulting from a sudden event that the applicant could not be expected to have prepared for adequately through financial planning and budgeting: such as a short-term illness, domestic violence, housefire or a death of a family member.
Grant amounts vary based on the nature of the event and related expenses. The maximum grant award is up to $5,000 per grant recipient per 12 month period.
These grants are not loans and do not have to be repaid. The National Vision Crisis Relief Fund is a charitable program, it is not an employee benefit. Therefore, there is no guarantee of assistance or “automatic” right to aid and certain income limitations may apply depending upon the applicant’s circumstances.
All employed full-time and part-time Associates and affiliated Optometrists are eligible to request assistance from the National Vision Crisis Relief Fund, including those on an approved leave of absence. The Fund does not cover employed temporary associates nor independent contractors. The National Vision Crisis Relief Fund is a charitable program; it is not a benefit to Associates. As such, certain charitable income guidelines apply.
Assistance may only be provided toward expenses that are a result of the event and that were incurred after the applicant's hire date. Applications for short-term evacuation relief must be submitted within 45 days of the event. All other applications must be submitted within twelve months of the event's occurrence.
What are the eligible events?
Some examples of eligible hardship events include:
- Domestic and Physical Abuse
- Violent and non-violent crime
- Short-term illness
- Death of employee, spouse/partner, dependent, or immediate family member
- Unscheduled loss of spouse or partner job or income
Some examples of eligible disaster events include:
- Natural disaster (e.g. Hurricane, Wildfire, Flood)
- Terroristic or military action
- Disaster resulting from an accident on a common carrier
- House fire
Additionally, if you are requesting assistance with a personal hardship, income guidelines may apply. Please review the income criteria here.
Examples of assistance:
• Food and clothing for disaster-related assistance
• Basic household goods
• Basic living expenses
• Home repairs as a result of a disaster
• Disaster-related evacuation expenses
• Extraordinary short-term medical expenses that are not covered by insurance
The following expenses do not qualify for assistance:
• Lost compensation due to reduced hours or missed time from work
• Legal fees, garnishments or expenses associated with divorce or custody cases
• Credit card or personal loan debt
• Routine or elective medical procedures
• Insurance premiums, deductibles or other items covered by insurance policies
• Routine automobile/home repair or those due to deferred maintenance
• Ongoing financial problems
• Benefits during new hire waiting periods
• Expenses associated with non-immediate family members
• Child care
For those who do not meet these guidelines but are having financial difficulties, community agencies and relief organizations may be able to provide information and resources. In addition, National Vision’s SupportNetwork Program is available free of charge to all National Vision Associates and affiliated Optometrists and their families. You can speak to a SupportNetwork licensed clinician, toll-free at 1-888-402-WELL (9355), anytime day or night, 365 days a year. Call the toll-free phone number to connect to a wide range of professional services – short-term counseling, free legal services, child/elder/pet care referrals, free financial services, and much more. Call SupportNework anytime toll-free at 1-888-402-WELL (9335) or visit MySupportNetwork.net. Download the eConnect app on Apple App or Google Play Stores. Username: nationalvision
What Happens Next?
Once your application is received you will receive a notification confirming your application has been submitted. If additional information is necessary to move forward you will receive an email outlining what documentation our team needs. Upon receipt of all supporting documentation a grant specialist will review and make a decision regarding your request. If approved, a grant distribution will be made based on your payment preference selected in the application. Check back daily to see the progress of your application as it moves through the review process.
How to Apply?
Applying is easy!
Step 1 Click the apply button - Create an online account or log in (if you have already created an account) to access the application page, complete the application with the requested information.
Step 2 Submit your application - Complete the requested information and upload the required supporting document and submit for review.
Step 3 Breathe Easier - A grant specialist will review your application and contact you if more information is required.