Claudia deCurnou went to the RealSense Tax Kickoff planning on having her taxes done as she has for the last few years. As was often the case, her young adult children accompanied her. What she didn’t expect was looking up from the preparers’ table and seeing all four of her children being trained by seasoned tax preparers to do their own taxes online.
“We were waiting for a few hours. They usually go with me and I still claim two of them,” deCornou said. “We were coming to the end of the day and I looked up and saw they were at the computers. I thought ‘I guess they’re doing theirs — this is something different this time.’ They were like,’ we can do this!’”
DeCurnou was proud to see her children — Alexander, Garrett and the twins, Myah and Camryn — taking on a new fiscally responsible skill. Helping them prepare for their adult lives is something that is very important to her.
“I want them to prepare for their financial future,” she said. “I want them to be aware of finances. I try to set an example for them.”
“When I first went to have my taxes done, I was nervous,” deCurnou said. “I didn’t know that people like my neighbors were volunteers. Now I feel so comfortable.”
DeCurnou knows the difficulties of unstable finances. Having moved here from the Philadelphia area with her husband, recent years have found her in a difficult, still-contested divorce case playing havoc with her finances. She hasn’t let it faze her though, taking on two other part-time jobs along with her full-time position with the Clay County Sheriff’s Office, civil division.
“I’ve been determined,” deCurnou said. “I wasn’t taught. I didn’t do my best and when my ex wasn’t responsible, everything fell to me. I’m trying to work my way out, working three jobs”
DeCurnou is grateful for the volunteers at the RealSense tax sites but, sees her family’s experience with RealSense more as a beginning to a good financial future.
“I really want them to be involved with all RealSense has to offer,” deCournou said. “I grew up watching my mother at home watching her pennies. I don’t want my kids to be there. Nothing says they won’t but I’ll know that they tried.”
Learning how to file their taxes is a first step.
“I learned how to file my taxes,” Myah deCurnou said. “It’s much easier than I thought!