This monthly column comes from the Arlington Community Federal Credit Union as part of their mission to financially empower the community. Credit unions are not-for-profit member-owned cooperatives and anyone who lives, works, worships, volunteers, goes to school, or does business in Arlington, Falls Church, Alexandria, or Fairfax County is eligible to join ACFCU.*
This is a challenging financial time for many in our community and navigating resources can be overwhelming. Here are a few key resources that you and your family can turn to for support:
- Assistance for food, rent payments and basic needs: If you’re having a hard time paying rent or utilities, accessing food, or making ends meet, contact the Arlington Department of Human Services at 703-228-1300. All services are free, confidential and safe.
- Your financial institution: Reach out to your financial institution proactively to ask what solutions they can provide. This could include payment deferrals, refinancing and more.
- Applying for unemployment: The CARES Act currently provides unemployment insurance to people who have been laid off, furloughed, or had hours or pay cut due to COVID-19. The process takes place through the state but the federal government is adding an additional $600 per week to your payment. Monitor the Virginia Employment Commission’s website for updates on unemployment insurance applications.
- Federal student loan payment deferral: Take advantage of loans being deferred through September 30. You don’t have to make any payments during this time, and there won’t be interest or penalties levied against you. While private student loans don’t have this same option, you can still ask your loan servicer if they are offering any COVID-19 related relief.
- Mental health & wellness: We know that many people across the country and in our own community are suffering right now. If you or someone you care about is looking for mental health support, Arlington provides a wonderful range of resources and tips for all aspects of mental wellness.
We are proud to be part of this resilient community that offers support and resources for you, our neighbors, whatever your challenges may be. We’re with you.
*Membership eligibility requirements apply. Federally insured by NCUA.