The nation is said to be in a slow recovery from the recession but many people living in the Southwest community are still feeling the financial pinch.
Empowered Communities Development Corporation is sponsoring financial literacy workshops to help those in need of guidance making financial decisions in these tough times.
“The financial literacy program is really introduced to the community so we can provide options that educate residents, stakeholders, children and families about managing money, how money works and how we can be a little bit more informed about how we handle our money,” said Regina Young of Empowered Communities.
According to Young, it is knowledge which empowers people to make wise financial decisions.
“If we become more knowledgeable about how we can prevent certain fiscal cliffs in our own personal lives, I think we can better handle situations when they arise,” Young said.
Emerging from a foreclosure crisis in which many residents in Southwest Philadelphia battled to keep their homes, rising utility costs and higher gas prices, it becomes challenging for the community to stay afloat when its residents find themselves going under.
“The reason that we are hosting the financial literacy workshops is because we want to make sure that people are informed and prepared to help prevent financial disaster in their lives,” she said.
Young said the workshop will also help those already in financial hardship to understand how to escape those challenges.
She considers it her duty as an advocate, and the CDC’s responsibility as an organization, to provide residents of the area with the knowledge and tools needed to help them rise in difficult times.
“Our job and my role in the community is to inform, prepare and educate,” she said. “Now if I and Empowered Communities CDC can’t do that then we shouldn’t exist.”
This isn’t a one time thing.
Young noted Empowered Communities CDC is developing programs designed to serve the needs of Southwest Philadelphians. The Financial literacy workshop is just one such program.
“Anybody who would like to know how to better manage their money in their businesses or their households, the workshops are for you,” she said.
She said while the CDC is new and that other such entities already exist in the Southwest Community, Empowered Communities distinguished itself by not limiting itself to any one specific community issue.
“We are trying to cover any area [of concern] that is necessary to make my community thrive and prosper,” Young said.
During its short existence, Empowered Community CDC has hosted an employment boot camp, also at Francis J. Myers Recreation Center, 5800 Chester Ave., and consists of six-week sessions on Thursday from 10 a.m. to noon.
The financial literacy program will hold its sessions on Mondays at Myers recreation center from 10 to11 a.m.