Common Cents

by RISE Foundation, Inc.
Common Cents
Jun 28, 2016

Spreading Financial Wellness to others

RISE provides the Common Cents (financial literacy) class to residence of Shelby County, who want to improve their financial health.  Most of them are low to moderate income individuals, who are initially reluctant to share the “real deal” about their financial condition.  Once in the class, and meet others in similar situations, the “flood gate” of sharing begins.   

For example, Linda talked about being in an abusive situation, and the abuser would not allow her to be involved in any of the financial transaction of the household.  Through counseling and the help of her family, she was able to get out of the situation but then was left with bills in her name that the abuser stopped paying.  Without his income, she was in a terrible predicament.   Linda shared how she was able to learn in the Common Cents class about developing a spending plan and comparing it to the amount of money that she was earning.   When they didn’t match, she looked at ways of aligning them, one of which was contacting the creditors to make payment arrangements. Linda now shares with others how she was able to reduce stress in her life as a result of taking control of her situation – both emotionally and financially.

Then there’s Latasha, who took the class in an effort to start building her credit to purchase a home for her family.  She knew she wanted a home but wasn’t sure about how to get ready financially to take on a loan.  Through the Common Cents class, Latasha learned about the importance of reviewing your credit report at least once each year. When she reviewed her report, there were items that she knew nothing about on the report.   Rather than paying someone to correct the report, she was able to write the credit bureau to challenge the entries and they were removed. She was happy to see her credit score increase!

At the end of the class, the facilitator gives certificates to each participant and photographs are taken highlighting that they have the skills and tools to make sound financial decisions.  Most of them share this information with their families, co-workers and others they know.  RISE encourages Common Cents participants to share what they have learned in order to expand the reach of RISE to others in the community.  That’s what RISE is all about – helping individuals/families to help themselves, with the expectation that the information will cascade to others in their network of family and friends.  

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Organization Information

RISE Foundation, Inc.

Location: Memphis, TN - USA
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @RISEmemphis
Project Leader:
Linda Williams
Memphis , Tennessee United States
$2,091 raised of $40,000 goal
26 donations
$37,909 to go
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