The Perpetual Education Fund (PEF) loan program helps members of the Church of all ages get an education that leads to a self-reliant job. Since 2001 this program has touched the lives of more than 90,000 individuals around the world. Through loan repayments and generous donations, this fund will continue to lift individuals and families out of poverty and into self-reliance for decades to come.
To learn more about the origins of PEF, you can read the address given by President Gordon B. Hinckley (“The Perpetual Education Fund,” Ensign, May 2001, 52–53) given at general conference.
Albania, American Samoa, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Barbados, Belize, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Cambodia, Cape Verde, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic
Ecuador, El Salvador, Fiji, DR Congo, Ghana, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Hong Kong
India, Indonesia, Ivory Coast, Jamaica, Kenya, Kiribati, Lesotho, Liberia
Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Mexico, Namibia, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Mozambique, Pakistan, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Portugal, Puerto Rico
Samoa, Sierra Leone, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, Suriname, Swaziland, Taiwan, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago
Uganda, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Venezuela, Zambia, Zimbabwe
You will work together with your bishop or branch president to decide if you qualify for a PEF loan. You will need his endorsement to begin the application process. The three qualifications are worthy, needy, and determined.
Qualifying for a PEF loan starts with living the gospel and qualifying for and receiving a temple recommend (limited use recommends also apply).
PEF funds are sacred and are meant only for members with significant financial need.
Think about all your different sources of income (your own and your family’s) to pay for school. This can include grants and scholarships. If you need help learning different ways to pay for your education, see Education for Better Work, pages 95–116, or contact your stake self-reliance specialist or your local self-reliance center.
You will need to work hard, diligently study, and overcome challenges to graduate from your program, find a better job, pay back your loan, and become self-reliant.
Why you need to pay back your loan
Each time you make a loan repayment, you create the opportunity for someone else to become self-reliant through education. Your honesty in returning the funds you borrowed will bless your life, your family, and the lives of those who follow you.
Getting an education is a life-changing experience, but it can also be an expensive one. PEF loans are available for qualified technical and vocational programs lasting no more than two years. They are used to pay for tuition and fees (such as supplies, books, certifications, and exams). PEF loans cannot be used to pay the cost of travel to and from school, daily living expenses, or the cost of a computer or other study aids.
We encourage you to review chapter 6 of Education for Better Work and complete all of the activities suggested so that you identify the best way to pay for your education.
For example, you will need to think about the cost of travel to and from school, the cost of a computer or other study aids (if needed), and your daily living expenses. These costs aren’t covered by a PEF loan.
After your loan is approved and you start school, you will start making payments. These payments are greatly reduced while you are in school. To check your loan payment amounts, you can sign into the PEF student website. Each country offers different options for repayment to help you repay your loan.
Once you have graduated from school, you will begin making payments on your account balance. Depending on the length of your program and the amount of your loan, you should be able to pay back your loan, including interest, within five years.
If you are having financial difficulties, medical concerns, or other issues that are making your PEF repayments very difficult, you may qualify for a temporary loan restructure. Please contact your stake self-reliance specialist or your local area PEF office to learn more.
If you have moved from the country where you began your PEF loan, you will need to contact the area PEF office where you now live to have your account transferred. This will help your repayment process.