$150,000 Grant Helps Working Austinites Become Financially Stable

We’re excited to announce that our Financial Stability program received a $150,000 two-year grant from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) Investor Education Foundation and United Way Worldwide as part of the organizations’ investment of more than $1.5 million in grants to help working families build financial stability. The grant is the second UWATX has received from the FINRA Foundation to support financial stability efforts.

Since 2012, more than 1,500 Greater Austin employees have received Learn Where You Earn financial education classes with 93% reporting taking steps towards a positive financial goal.

The grant will be used to expand our Learn Where You Earn initiative that provides financial education, coaching and counseling for low-income employees in their workplace. The grant will allow hundreds of employees working in Austin to attend classes on how to create and use budgets, manage checking accounts, access their credit score, repair credit, pay off debt, and save for the future. Currently, The City of Austin, Travis County Transportation and Natural Resources (TNR) and Open Door Preschools are confirmed to offer Learn Where You Earn classes to their employees.

Since 2012, Learn Where You Earn has provided financial education classes to more than 1,500 employees in the Greater Austin area with more than 93 percent of class participants report taking steps towards a positive financial goal such as paying off debt, checking a credit score, or opening a savings account.

Additionally, more than 85 percent of employees report understanding their credit report, knowing their rights as a consumer and creating a household budget to track expenses as a result of the Learn Where you Earn classes. Due to the grant, we’re able to expand the class curriculum offerings to target the needs of each employer as well as integrate hands-on financial coaching and financial counseling services to help meet employees’ financial goals.

The grant was awarded under the FINRA Foundation and United Way Worldwide “Financial Education in Your Community” program, which supports community-based financial education for working individuals and families. The $1.5 million was awarded in 12 two-year grants, part of almost $8.5 million that has been granted to 68 grassroots projects since 2009.

The 12 grants were competitively awarded to local United Ways and other nonprofit community groups to identify best practices for helping low-wage individuals take action toward increased financial stability. The projects leverage strategic partnerships and successful existing programs, and target a diverse population across the country. In addition to funding, the FINRA Investor Education Foundation and United Way Worldwide are providing unbiased financial education materials and ongoing technical assistance.

In addition to United Way for Greater Austin, grants were awarded to the Baltimore CASH Campaign in Baltimore, Maryland; Clarifi (Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Delaware Valley) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Innovative Changes in Portland, Oregon; Metro United Way, Inc. in Louisville, Kentucky; NEDCO (Neighborhood Economic Development Corporation) in Springfield, Oregon; Northwest Side Housing Center in Chicago, Illinois, United Way of Central Indiana in Indianapolis, Indiana; United Way of the Inland Valleys in Riverside, California; United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County in Milwaukee, Wisconsin; United Way of Monroe County in Bloomington, Indiana; and United Way of Story County in Ames, Iowa.

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