The approach considers the financial and emotional well-being of veterans and their loved ones.
By Kara Corridan
Prudential has a long-standing commitment to the military community, which includes veterans as well as active military members and their families and caregivers.
This is what that commitment looks like.
Improving financial health and well-being
These efforts align with the company’s vision to expand access to investing, insurance, and retirement security, and focus on building wealth for the military community.
Over the past 12 years, Prudential has provided more than $25 million in grants, sponsorships and financial wellness support to organizations. These groups include:
- Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS), which provides care for those grieving the death of a military or veteran family member.
- The Elizabeth Dole Foundation, which supports financial wellness for military and veteran caregivers.
- The GI Go Fund, a Newark, New Jersey-based nonprofit that Prudential helped to establish a small-business incubator for Veterans. It also operates a national database to link employers with Veterans for quality employment.
Beyond that, since 2019, more than 7,100 members of the military community have attended 300-plus financial wellness seminars. Last year, in a first-of-its-kind partnership, Prudential joined forces with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to lead 26 free financial wellness seminars. To date, these have been attended by more than 4,000 veterans, transitioning service members and their families.
Prioritizing career growth
Prudential also offers fellowships to employment for veterans, transitioning military, caregivers and spouses through the Hiring Our Heroes program. So far in 2022, the company has hired four veterans and eight military spouses through this partnership.
In addition, the company partners with Hiring Our Heroes to award an organization for their efforts to help post-9/11 veterans and transitioning service members find meaningful employment. Earlier this month Prudential presented Indeed, a popular job search platform, with the Steve Robinson Post-9/11 Veteran Employment Award, named after a Prudential employee who was an Army veteran and vice president of external veterans affairs until his death in 2014.
Offering much-needed emotional support
In light of the mental health challenges faced by the military community — including a suicide rate that jumped more than 40% from 2015 to 2021, according to the U.S. Department of Defense — Prudential’s VETNET business resource group is prioritizing emotional support for its members. It leads Table Talks, which are candid, unrecorded discussions focused on promoting intersectionality with the other business resource groups, raising awareness and focusing on mental wellness. A recent Table Talk addressed suicide and post-traumatic stress disorder, among other crucial topics.
Eddie Daniel, Premier Accounts executive, Group Insurance, and VETNET member, brought this topic to light when he shared his experience as a veteran who is actively helping to support his fellow service members facing serious mental health challenges.
Focusing on military spouses
Knowing the challenges they face in finding employment because they’re frequently moving due to deployments, Prudential has made a concentrated effort to not only hire military spouses but to connect them to meaningful careers. As an example, the company funds the Military Spouse Corporate Career Network’s Arm-Me Up Army Military Spouse Career Campaign, which provides job placement and career services to military spouses as well as family members and caregivers.
Prudential has been recognized for its long-standing body of work. Just last year, the company received the Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award, the highest recognition given by the U.S. government to employers for their support of their employees who serve in the National Guard and Reserve. In recent years Prudential has also received The Military Friendly® Employer Award (for four years running) and has been on the Best for Vets: Employers – Military Times list. The company was recently named a Top 10 Military Spouse Friendly Employer for the second year in a row.
Peaches, a service dog, ceremoniously dropped the puck at the New Jersey Devils – Arizona Coyotes game last weekend. Prudential and the New Jersey Devils recognized current and former military service members at the 12th annual Military Appreciation Night presented by Prudential. More than 200 active-duty service members were in attendance and the event helped raise funds for the GI Go Fund, which aids service members transitioning back to civilian life, and Paws of War, which provides veterinary care for service animals for veterans and first responders living with disabilities.