|Mayor Hancock Opens Seven Centers to Provide Free Financial Counseling Services to Low Income Residents
DENVER – Mayor Michael B. Hancock and mpowered today opened the first of seven new Financial Empowerment Centers that will provide free, one-on-one professional financial counseling services to low-income Denver residents.
Denver is one of five U.S. cities opening Financial Empowerment Centers thanks to a grant from the Cities for Financial Empowerment (CFE) Fund. The $1.9 million grant is funded by Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Mayors Project, which aims to spread proven and promising ideas among cities.
“We are committed to providing a high quality of life for all our residents in part by supplying tools that will help them to plan smart and succeed,” Mayor Hancock said. “The seven new Centers will provide thousands of Denverites with customized counseling aimed at achieving long-term financial security.”
The Office of Strategic Partnerships and local nonprofit mpowered will manage the grant and support implementation of the Financial Empowerment Center model developed by New York City’s Financial Empowerment Center to assist clients in building healthy credit, opening safe banking accounts and creating budgets that facilitate savings.
“The Denver Office of Strategic Partnerships is excited that the Financial Empowerment Center grant will provide city agencies and nonprofit partners the opportunity to enhance services that include financial empowerment as a key component,” said Jay Salas, Program Manager of Denver Office of Strategic Partnerships.
Approximately 21 percent of Denver’s 600,000 residents live below the federal poverty level. Financial counseling and financial literacy efforts are strong tools to move individuals and families out of poverty and toward self-sufficiency.
“Together, our partnership with the city and local nonprofits will help us close a gap in this type of service and contribute to the economic vitality of our city,” said Chad Gentry, Executive Director of mpowered.
In January 2013, the CFE Fund awarded grants - made possible by a $16.2 million investment from Bloomberg Philanthropies – to replicate New York City’s Financial Empowerment Center model. New York’s 30 Financial Empowerment Centers have helped more than 19,000 families reduce their debt by more than $9 million and save nearly $1 million since 2008. By investing in these five cities, Bloomberg Philanthropies seeks to further demonstrate the effectiveness of the model, making a powerful case for even more cities around the country to begin taking up this important work.
Financial Empowerment Center Locations:
- Denver Human Services, Castro Building – 1200 Federal Blvd.
- Office of Economic Development Denver Workforce Center at Speer – 1391 N. Speer Blvd., Suite 500
- Office of Economic Development Denver Workforce Center at Montbello – 4685 Peoria St., Suite 25
- Habitat for Humanity of Metro Denver – 3245 Eliot St.
- Mi Casa Resource Center – 360 Acoma St.
- Tramway Nonprofit Center – 3532 Franklin Street, Unit B
- Warren Village – 1323 Gilpin St.
To learn more about Denver’s Financial Empowerment Center program, click here. To learn more about the CFE Fund, visit www.cfefund.org.
Denver Office of Strategic Partnerships
The Denver Office of Strategic Partnerships was created in 2004 to leverage the best of Denver’s public and nonprofit sectors to engage in innovative and collaborative work. DOSP’s philosophy is that by working collectively, the sectors can be even more efficient and effective in strengthening Denver communities. www.denvergov.org/strategicpartnerships.
Since 2002, mpowered has provided affordable programs to help more than 40,000 people make informed financial choices. With offices in Denver and Colorado Springs, mpowered is a leader in financial education and champions financial stability as one of the most important components of a healthy lifestyle. www.mpoweredcolorado.org.
Bloomberg Philanthropies is on a mission to improve and lengthen lives. We focus on five key areas to create lasting change: Public Health, Environment, Education, Government Innovation and Arts & Culture. Bloomberg Philanthropies encompasses all of Michael R. Bloomberg’s charitable activities, including his foundation and his personal giving. In 2012, $370 million was distributed. For more information, please visit www.bloomberg.org.
About The Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund
The CFE Fund supports municipal efforts to improve the financial stability of households by leveraging opportunities unique to local government. By translating cutting edge experience with large scale programs, research, and policy in cities of all sizes, the CFE Fund assists mayors and other local leaders to identify, develop, fund, implement, and research pilots and programs that help families build assets and make the most of their financial resources. For more information, please visit http://www.cfefund.org/ or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.