The United Way of Passaic County is actively seeking partners for the Your Money, Your Goals Training Cohort. As a provider of financial empowerment services for over 6 years the United Way of Passaic County is excited for the opportunity to offer the Your Money, Your Goals toolkit into the financial empowerment services being provided by the United Way of Passaic County to our community partners.
Your Money Your Goals is a training and a take-home toolkit that helps front line staff and volunteers that work with clients/consumers to:
- Make spending decisions that can help them reach their goals
- Order and fix credit reports
- Avoid tricks and traps as they choose financial products
- Make decisions about repaying debts and taking on new debt
- Keep track of their income and bills
- Decide if they need a checking account and understand what they need to open one
Case Managers and other frontline staff will participate in YMYG training sessions organized and moderated by UWPC staff. The target population of the Your Money, Your Goal trainings is two-fold with the primary target population being case worker and frontline workers at non-profit organizations who work directly advising and helping clients who are low or moderate income. While these workers represent a valuable resource to the clients they serve and the agency’s they work in, they themselves often represent a population who would benefit from financial education services. A review of local salary and employment data reveals that on average these workers earn $14-$18 per hour or $29,120-$37,440 annually. Dependent on household composition these salary are well below the yearly income of $53,877 needed by a family of four to meet their basic needs in Passaic County calculated by the Household Survival Budget, a framework used to define the average income a households needs to afford basic necessities (housing, childcare, food, healthcare, and transportation) based on real cost for the County.
Participation in the YMYG trainings will help these case managers improve their personal financial stability as well as support the project’s secondary target, low-income families seeking assistance at non-profit organizations. For many of these individuals, case workers and non-profit staff may be the only opportunity to access unbiased and accurate financial empowerment services. As individuals already know and trust their case managers, often having already shared much of their personal information with them, case manager can introduce financial empowerment concepts within the context of their pre-existing trust-based relationship and then linking clients with other financial empowerment providers.
UWPC will commence the first cycle of the YMYG training in the Summer, 2017 with a second cycle commencing Fall, 2017 The YMYG training will be moderated and organized by UWPC staff, as a classroom-based training to consist of 3, 4 hour session approximately over 3 weeks. It is expected that a minimum of 20 case workers will register for Summer Series YMYG but the training could accommodate 15 students in each class.
Training will be structured to encourage classroom discussion and peer learning. Self-reflection and assessment such as students reviewing their own credit scores is a key component of the first two training sessions, providing participated with an opportunity to review and their own financial situation. It is noteworthy that the training framework allow for flexibility in course topic based on community and participant needs.
It will be the goal of the training sessions to help case managers and frontline staff gain confidence regarding financial issues that will improve their own as well as their clients’ path to financial security.
The United Way of Passaic County looks forward to expanding the impact of the Financial Empowerment Zone by providing this needed service to our community. If you or your organization is interested in joining the Summer 2017 training, please contact Caitlin George, Manager of the Financial Empowerment Zone at United Way of Passaic County at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 973-279-8900 ext, 214.