I was asked this a couple of months back... to loan X some money... a substantial sum (£1000). After chatting with my hubby I realised we couldn't actually give the whole lot that month, but could make a plan to do it over 3 months. We also decided the first month would be a gift.
X was overwhelmed.
Incredibly, the second and third month weren't needed after all, as X got a payrise! I thought it was just amazing how it all worked out.
Always do what you are comfortable doing - never do it begrudgingly or with the wrong motive. And if you are not in a position to help, be honest about your position (not needing to give details!).