Thursday, April 15, 2010 Helps Organizations Build Financial Security for Low-and-Moderate Income Families

For more than a year, the Aspen Institute, the Center for the Study of Social Policy, and several other partners have worked together to create The website provides a comprehensive set of financial education tools, trainings, and products for non-profits, advocacy groups, practitioners and policy-makers focused on building assets for low-income families. On April 13, 2010, the official launch event of was held at the Kaiser Family Foundation where keynote speaker Michelle Greene, deputy assistant secretary for Financial Education and Financial Access at the U.S. Treasury Department, stated that in our current economic climate, resources like the are “critical to the financial stability of this country.”

At the launch, Kirstin Moy, director of the Economic Opportunities Program at the Aspen Institute, presented on the six key financial areas of the site: Budgeting, Savings, Debt, Credit Scores, Insurance/Safety Net and Organizational Resources. In the Budgeting area, for example, a five minute questionnaire called the Quick Assessment Tool helps counselors promptly identify client needs and priorities while the multi-modal Pre-Paid Debit Card Training provides guidance to counselors on how to discuss the key benefits of pre-paid debit cards. In the other areas of the site, non-profits can access low-cost credit reports or they can take advantage of the Debt Tool that provides recommendations on how to assist clients with debt management. As the site develops, expects to have additional resources and tools for groups to utilize.

“In this time of economic uncertainty and the reorganization of the financial services sector, CSSP and Aspen institute believe this resource will allow organizations to work more effectively and more efficiently while at the same time, reducing their bottom line," said Bill Shepardson of the Center for the Study of Social Policy. Timely, effective, and efficient, is a welcomed addition to the field.

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