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Expanding Financial Education with RealSense and Wells Fargo

July 27, 2015

A $200,000 grant to the United Way of Northeast Florida will help low- and moderate-income residents get financial coaching, as part of an ongoing effort to help people strengthen their financial skills. The grant is part of the Financial Capability Network, a partnership between United Way Worldwide and Wells Fargo.

The Financial Capability Network is piloting strategies including educational programming, budget workshops and job training, with a goal of helping individuals and families make financial decisions that improve short-term cash flow and long-term financial stability. Established in 2012 with a five-year, $5 million Wells Fargo grant, the network aims to strengthen the financial stability of low-and moderate-income individuals and families in Northeast Florida and seven other communities across the country.

A volunteer financial educator conducts a free workshop at RealSense Prosperity Place.
A volunteer financial educator conducts a free workshop at RealSense Prosperity Place.

“We greatly appreciate Wells Fargo’s commitment to promote the long-term economic prosperity for everyone in our region,” said Michelle Braun, president and CEO of United Way of Northeast Florida. “Thanks to their continued support for this work, we are seeing measurable results.”

Wells Fargo provides a grant to United Way of Northeast Florida to ensure local residents have year-round access to financial management resources at RealSense Prosperity Place. Conveniently located in the Wells Fargo Historic Springfield Community Learning Center at 1601 N. Main Street, Prosperity Place provides financial education classes and services that help families and individuals establish budgets, increase savings, prepare their taxes for free and learn a wide range of financial management skills.

I was amazed at how common sense the classes were,” said LaVerne Bishop, a 62-year-old certified nursing assistant who is focused on managing her finances more effectively as she ages. “It’s all a learning process. This is a really good program.”

In the first three years of the partnership, more than 2,700 Northeast Florida residents have benefitted from Wells Fargo’s financial education programs. Seven other participating communities: Winston-Salem; Miami; Atlanta; Des Moines; Houston; Phoenix; and San Francisco also participate in the Financial Capability Network. The next two years of the program will include a significant focus on financial coaching.

“We believe that financial coaching is one of the most effective strategies in helping to change the financial situation of individuals and families,” said Kelly Smith, Wells Fargo North Florida regional president. “This kind of ongoing support empowers families as they begin to get on more solid financial ground and stay there. As the number of individuals involved grows, so does the overall impact on our communities and our economy.”

For information about financial coaching visit RealSense Prosperity Place at 1601 N. Main Street or call 904-355-2090.