Mar 30, 2020
Taking Care of the Families of Healthcare Workers Who Risk Their Lives Every Day

The brave healthcare workers in our communities have families who need our help. While many of us have the opportunity to seek shelter from the COVID-19 virus, healthcare workers are doing what they do best – saving the lives of others. There is simply no way for them to do their jobs today and help all of us without putting themselves directly in harm’s way. As a result, each of these courageous individuals and their families are living with the growing fear and anxiety of what may happen if they become sick or succumb to COVID-19. This is playing out for millions of people across our country, in every state and town we live in.

This is an unprecedented societal test, and Americans are rising to the occasion, revealing our shared values, and living up to our rich history of sacrifice for the common good. The fortitude of our healthcare workers is inspiring, as are the actions of so many neighbors and friends finding ways to help, and the institutions that have retooled their factories or provided funding for ventilators, masks and other life-saving equipment.

Our two companies are uniquely positioned to be there for people in times of need – providing them with peace of mind today, while also helping protect their futures with hope for a better tomorrow. As a life insurer, New York Life does this by helping families send their kids to college, pay their bills and stay together in their homes. As a health services company, Cigna supports every individual to live their healthiest life, both in body and mind.

That’s why today, the New York Life Foundation and the Cigna Foundation are jointly launching the Brave of Heart Fund at E4E Relief, a subsidiary of Foundation For the Carolinas, to provide charitable grants to financially support the families of healthcare workers who lose their lives in the fight against COVID-19. Each of our foundations has agreed to seed the charitable Fund with an initial $25 million contribution. New York Life Foundation will also provide a dollar-for-dollar match on the first $25 million of individual donations received. And, beyond financial support, Cigna is providing these families with emotional and behavioral health services by phone and online. Our shared goal is simple: to ensure that every family who has a nurse, technician, orderly, cafeteria worker, custodian, doctor, or other front line healthcare worker or volunteer who loses their life supporting the battle against COVID-19 has a safety net to rely on in the days ahead.

We know our efforts cannot begin to restore what these families have lost, but we can show our deep gratitude by offering financial assistance to cover their basic needs such as housing, food, transportation, education and medical care, as well as support in the form of emotional and behavioral health services. And just as our two companies and our foundations have come together, our sincere hope is we can do this together with you. With support from individuals and corporations across the country, we aim to raise more than $100 million for this critical cause so we can help maximize the impact we can have on these families’ futures.

If there is one thing this global pandemic has taught us, it is that by working together, caring for each other, and supporting those in need, we can help address the monumental challenges of those who need us most. The Brave of Heart Fund offers a powerful way to demonstrate our unity and shared values by expressing our deepest gratitude to the families who are fighting the fight of a generation. Please consider showing your support and donating to this important mission at