APPLICANT FAQ

WHAT HAPPENS AFTER I APPLY FOR ASSISTANCE?

Applications are accepted until the 15th of each month. Applications are evaluated between the 16th and the 22nd of each month. Please be available for a follow up call from a “private” number during this time. We do everything we can to keep your information confidential.

Your application will be given to a relief fund volunteer who does not know you personally. This volunteer will follow up with you to ask more questions, to suggest other sources of support, and to verify employment losses and other information. A request will not be evaluated by the awards committee until a relief fund volunteer has followed up with you, so it is very important that you respond to our volunteers when contacted.

After a relief fund volunteer evaluates an application, the awards committee will use a points-based system to prioritize the request and determine the funding amount. 

WHEN AND HOW WILL I GET ASSISTANCE?

Distribution decisions will be made once a month. Assistance will be sent as quickly as possible after the awards committee makes a decision about an application. The fastest, easiest method will be sending payment electronically through PayPal, but if that is not possible, BBCA will mail a check to the applicant.

HOW DOES THIS POINTS-BASED SYSTEM WORK WHEN YOU‘RE EVALUATING MY APPLICATION?

While we wish we could help everyone hurt by the pandemic, we are limited by donations we receive. To make the evaluation process as fair and objective as possible, we assign points to applications based on several criteria. These criteria include:

  • the urgency and severity of your need
  • the size of your household
  • the availability of other income, savings, or assistance programs to meet your need
  • why and when you lost your income

Our points system will prioritize applicants who are in the most dire situations, facing the loss of basic needs like shelter.

If you would like to know more about our needs assessment process, please contact us.

IF I APPLY FOR ASSISTANCE, WILL I GET THE AMOUNT I ASK FOR?

Donations received will ultimately determine how much money the relief fund can distribute. Not all applicants will receive funding, and applicants may receive less than they requested. If we can’t give you everything you ask for, our volunteers will suggest other possible sources of assistance. 

WHY DOES THE APPLICATION ASK FOR SO MUCH PERSONAL INFORMATION? WHY DO I HAVE TO RESPOND WITH EVEN MORE INFORMATION WHEN A RELIEF FUND VOLUNTEER CONTACTS ME?

FOR LEGAL REASONS: In its publication “Disaster Relief: Providing Assistance Through Charitable Organizations,” the IRS, following the 9/11 tragedy, clarified and broadened the kinds of needs for which cash assistance may be given, “provided an objective evaluation has been made of the victims’ ability to meet these needs.” U.S. tax law indicates that public charities must have a legitimate system for verifying the financial “neediness” of applicants and that the funds are spent on immediate needs, which include medical emergencies, assistance with rent, and transportation. “Need can be addressed with cash assistance, or other need may be met through services such as counseling, training and job placement services, which are charitable without regard to financial need. The type of aid that is appropriate to relief distress in a particular case depends on the nature of the individual’s need and resources.”

FOR ETHICAL REASONS: With so many people in crisis and with limited funds to help them, we have an obligation to ensure that resources donated to the relief fund go to those truly in dire need, and the only way to know that is to ask these questions. Please provide as much accurate information as you can when applying, so that our volunteers can be prepared to evaluate your request and follow up with you and your most recent employer. 

CAN I APPLY MORE THAN ONCE?

Applicants may apply for funding more than once, but their request will be given a lower priority if we have given them assistance before, except in extenuating circumstances.