“It’s growing rather rapidly,” said executive director Elder John K. Carmack. “We have 50 percent more applications this year than last year. The year before, there was also a significant increase.” And Elder Carmack feels the program will keep on growing. He foresees a time in the future when it will assist many more, perhaps 100,000 people and beyond.
The PEF is designed to help Church members between the ages of 18 and 30, many of them returned missionaries, receive education and employment that otherwise would not be available to them. It began eight years ago in Mexico, Peru and Chile. Today members of the Church in 42 countries have access to the fund.
A young man in Peru who studied to become an accountant said, “I am so grateful to God for this great opportunity to receive what my brothers and sisters did not have, to help my family, to accomplish my goals.”
“The Perpetual Education Fund also delivers self-respect, hope,” Elder Carmack said. “It is just beginning to achieve the vision of former Church President Gordon B. Hinckley; our current president, Thomas S. Monson; and our board of directors.”