The Save Up program has helped many low-income families in our community to do incredible things with their meager earnings. I would like to share with you one of our success stories, that involves a hardworking mother, Ms. Tee:
Ms. Tee, a divorced mother of four sons ages 14-19, saw a lifelong dream come to fruition when she closed on a home of her own.
A Department Tech for a local nonprofit, which serves people with disabilities, Ms. Tee spends her workdays shuttling clients to and from doctors’ appointments. Although Ms. Tee always dreamed of becoming a homeowner, she never believed homeownership was within her reach – that is, until she heard about RISE through a coworker.
Ms. Tee enrolled in the Save Up Program, which teaches participants how to create a budget based on their personal income and expenses, and how to obtain and improve their credit scores and credit reports. The Save Up Program also helps participants establish bank accounts and purchase assets.
RISE then helps participants obtain asset-specific training as needed, at no cost to the participant. For example, those saving for homeownership will need to complete homebuyer education classes. Finally, RISE will help Save Up participants purchase the asset for which they’ve saved. Assets include homes, cars, computers, post-secondary classes and small businesses.
“Being in the Save Up Program was a faith builder,” said Ms. Tee, who moved her family into their new home this past December. “Now I feel that I can accomplish anything. RISE is a symbol of me having faith in myself. Learning how to budget and save has helped me to purchase a home. My next goal is to save for my children’s college education.”
With your help and support, the RISE Save Up program can help create even more successfull stories like Ms. Tee's. We currently have a waiting list and with more support, can help more low-income working families to make better choices that benefit their families. .
We are counting on you!
Karen Madlock, RISE Save Up Program Coordinator
Goal Card Student J Porter truly exemplifies what it means to be a RISER (This is the expectation and goal of every Goal Card student). He has worked diligently to achieve his goals, including good grades, conduct and attendance. Goal Card has been a support for his efforts that have produced successful outcomes.
As a Melrose High School student, J Porter earned multiple academic awards and honors. He scored a 27 on the ACT exam, which led to scholarship offers from colleges near and far. While at Melrose, he served as senior class president and president of the National Honor Society. As a Goal Card participant, J Porter consistently displayed a positive attitude and a can-do approach to academic tasks. We know those attributes will carry him a long ways in his next chapter as a college student.
Congratulations goes to J Porter! He serves as an example of what Goal Card students can do if they take advantage of the opportunities available at their school, community and of course, the Goal Card Program!
We currently have 700+ students enrolled in five Goal Card sites in our area. With your support, we can continue to create 700 more positive stories like J Porter, and you can be a part of their success!
Although our Common Cents program was initially intended to teach financial literacy skills to hourly workers, we have found that the lessons in the classes are applicable to many populations. Right now, we are proud to be partnering with the Community Alliance for the Homeless to teach valuable financial literacy skills to families who are chronically homeless.
Without the skills and behavior changes necessary to make the best of their income, many of these families will move into new homes, only to be unable to maintain them, and will become homeless again.
RISE has partnered with seven agencies serving homeless families to teach these skills. We are proud to be nearing our goal of 200 families, equipped with the skills to make the most of their income and live a financially stable lifestyle.