Our lawyers would kill us if we didn’t say that TOCA Cares is new and we will learn as we go along. Probably some changes will be made, until we get all the kinks worked out. Also, its a program run by your fellow employees, doing their best, but there may be some inconsistent results and human mistakes. As far as we know, this hasn’t been done before, so we’re going to refine and improve it as we go. We're excited to see what TOCA Cares can do!
What is the TOCA Cares fund?
TOCA Cares is the way TOCA employees and shareholders take care of our own. The community fund is sustained by tax-deductible contributions voluntarily made directly from employees' and shareholders' paychecks. Any employee can then apply for a grant or loan from the community fund if they are facing an unexpected hardship, want to pursue an educational opportunity (from taking a cooking class to getting your degree), or want to cover costs to participate in charitable work.
Why was the TOCA Cares fund created?
Here at TOCA, community is important. We know that life happens, so we want to make sure our employees have support if they find themselves in an unexpected financial jam. We want to help our employees keep learning, even though it's sometimes costly to do so. We want to make sure everyone in the TOCA community gets to experience the joys of giving back. Community is important, and TOCA Cares is our way of supporting our own.
How do I donate to the fund?
You can donate here. Any TOCA employees who want to contribute can select any amount they want to donate directly from their paycheck. (You can update your donation info any time by going to the contribute section of the TOCA Cares website.) All contributions go straight to the community fund and are completely tax-deductible.
Shareholders will match my contribution and then some?
Yes! Shareholders will match your contribution to the community fund. For each $1 you give, shareholders will donate anywhere from $2 to $6.
TOCA Cares will sponsor my education and charitable endeavors?
Correct! TOCA Cares will sponsor a charity of your choice that you’re personally involved in or contribute towards you furthering your education. See the apply page for more information.
Is the application anonymous?
Your application is completely anonymous to those on the Decision Committee. Once your application has been approved, your details will be released just to the people who need to know to process the payment. There are certain exceptions where information in an application will be shared with the employee’s manager on a discrete basis.
Do I have to contribute to the fund to be able to use it?
No. All contributions are completely optional, but karma is a potent force. Those who apply will be in the best position to see how important the community fund is.
Can I pull money from the fund if I don’t use it?
Which hardship situations qualify to receive money from the fund?
The point of the fund is to help employees in serious and unexpected financial situtations. Examples include medical costs, car accidents, home accidents, an airplane ticket for event you can’t miss, funeral expenses, etc. If you’re not sure, it doesn’t hurt to apply. If the situation does not qualify or exceeds the maximum grant amount, you could be offered a small loan.
Are there situations that don’t qualify to receive money from the fund?
Most logical unexpected hardship applications will receive funding. Situations that don’t qualify include funding for vacations, repeated incidents (such as the 3rd broken phone), luxury items, new pets, or other forseeable expenses.
Can I take out a loan instead of receiving money?
Of course. If you’re more comfortable with receiving a loan rather than grant, you can let us know on your application. Also, if the situation exceeds the maximum grant amount, you may be offered a small loan instead of a grant. Loans will be deducted from your paycheck over a period of time.
How long do I have to request financial assistance for a hardship?
Usually financial emergencies happen fairly quickly. A good rule of thumb is no later than 30 days, but if you're not sure it doesn't hurt to apply.
How fast is money available from the fund?
This depends on how fast you need the money. Typically, once approved, your bill can be paid within 3-4 days. It also depends on how fast you work with our partner organization, Helping Hands.
Is there a max amount I can receive?
In terms of a hardship, typical grant amounts range from $500-$1,500. Depending on the situation (especially if it exceeds this amount), you may also be offered a mixture of a grant and a loan. If your needs drastically exceed our loan amounts, then TOCA may set up an employee crowdfunding platform on your behalf and publicize it to TOCA employees across the nation. Whatever your situation, TOCA is here to help you figure it out.
How many times can I use the fund?
Unless you're obviously abusing the fund, you may apply multiple times. However, after a certain amount of applications, your likelihood of being approved will start to decrease.
How often do I donate to the fund?
You can choose whatever amount you wish out of your monthly paycheck or simply donate via check.
Can I apply for the fund on another employee’s behalf?
Yes! If you know one of your coworkers is struggling, you can fill out the application on their behalf. After the initial application, communications will be between that employee and the Decision Committee.
Who makes the decision on my application?
A committee of fellow employees will decide on all applications. Their membership is secret and they are bound to keep information confidential from other employees not on the committee.
Are my donations to the fund tax deductible?
Yes! Just make sure you itemize your deductions. Yearly contributions over $250 will receive a tax reciept in January.
Wait, there are benefits under our insurance?
Yes! There are insurance benefits completely separate from the TOCA Cares community fund. As part of your benefits, WorkLife services are available at no extra cost and are completely confidential. Depending on your need, you can be connected to a counselor, mediator, clinician, lawyer, or financial advisor. Either call 866-402-0003 or log on to liveandworkwell.com (access code: Insperity).
Still Have a Question? Ask an admin!
We want all TOCA employees to get the most out of TOCA Cares. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask. An admin will reach out shortly with answers.