FAQs About SCF
August 1, 2011
The St. Christopher Truckers Development and Relief Fund (SCF) is a 501(c)(3), non-profit organization that provides assistance to professional drivers whose medical problems have led to financial hardship. The SCF also conducts health research to benefit professional drivers and the trucking industry.
From January 2008 to the end of August 2011, 212 drivers applied for assistance. From September 2011 through mid-June, an additional 274 drivers have applied for a total of 486 applicants. Of these, 386 were approved for assistance: 268 were given financial assistance (totaling over $134,000) and 118 were given non-monetary assistance (e.g. help negotiating hospital/doctor bills, finding local resources, finding free health clinics or doctors, etc). Of the total number of applicants, 62 withdrew their application, 16 have been denied and 22 are still pending (meaning we are waiting on more information such as medical records or waiting on their bills).
The majority of assistance has been given to help with rent/mortgage payments (33%), followed by help with utilities (18%), medical bills (16%), car/truck payments (10%), living expenses (9%), and other bills such as auto and health insurance or prescriptions (14%). Diagnoses of SCF applicants have included cardiovascular problems, cancer, diabetes, accidents/injuries, neurological problems, as well as many others.
Here are some of the most commonly asked questions about the SCF. Others can be found on the website.
1. How do I make a donation?
Mail a check to:
P.O. Box 30763
Knoxville, TN 37930
Click the ‘Donate’ button on the top of the webpage to donate through PayPal
Call 877-332-GIVE (4483)
2. Are donations tax deductible?
Yes. The St. Christopher Fund is a 501(c)(3), non-profit organization, which means that all donations made to the organization are tax deductible. You will receive a postcard that indicates how much you donated.
3. Who can apply for assistance?
In order for a driver to be considered a candidate for financial support from the St. Christopher’s Fund, they must first meet certain criteria. After the criteria have been met, SCF may be able to assist drivers in a variety of capacities.
1. Must hold a commercial driver’s license
2. Driving a commercial vehicle must be primary source of income (or was before the medical problem caused a loss of work)
3. Must have a significant medical problem that requires monetary assistance:
a. Medical information must be able to be confirmed by medical examination or via contact with your physician
b. Must be able to provide proof of needing financial assistance
4. How do I apply?
Call Arlene Plemons at 865-202-9428. Leave a message with your name, address, email or fax number and an application will be sent to you. Email Arlene a request or your completed application to firstname.lastname@example.org.
5. How does the process work?
After receiving your completed application, the medical release form is sent to your doctor along with a request for records. Once the records have been received, members of the Review Committee review your application. The Review Committee typically meets once/week. However, as our board is made up of all volunteers, there may be some weeks when they are not able to meet due to other commitments. After a decision has been made, you will receive a call or email. If you are approved for financial assistance, you will be asked to provide a copy of the bill(s) to which you want the money to go towards. Payments are sent to companies directly.
6. How long does the process take?
It can take anywhere from a few days to a few months to process the application. Delays are due to 1) an incomplete application, 2) delays in receiving medical records, 3) a lack of response from the applicant concerning questions, 4) an inability to reach the applicant.
Medical records are requested within 1 business day of receiving an application; however, many offices do not supply the records in a timely manner. We suggest that applicants call their doctor or hospital in advance, letting them know a release for medical records will be coming from the St. Christopher Fund, and ask that they send your records as soon as possible.
7. What types of assistance is provided? What is not covered?
Assistance is provided for essential expenses (e.g., not cable, data packages on cell phone plans, motorcycle/boat payments, vacation homes, traffic tickets, etc). Assistance can be in the form of payment for medical services or prescription drugs, assistance with expenses (e.g. utilities, rent/mortgage, insurance) while recovering from illness and out of work, or negotiating price reductions with insurance companies, medical providers and hospitals.
We do not cover for dental work, credit cards, pet care, funeral expenses, child support, gifts, transportation, bills deemed by the committee as unnecessary or excessive.
If you or anyone you know is experiencing financial difficulty due to a medical problem, please think of us. The SCF is here to help drivers and their families! If you would like to help support your fellow drivers in their time of need, please make a donation.
Article by Donna Kennedy, Ph.D., M.S.
St. Christopher Fund contact information:
Donation line: 877-332-GIVE (4483)
Fax #: 865-851-8396
P.O. Box 30763 Knoxville, TN 37924