A big thank you goes out to Sterling Bank for awarding us a $2,000 grant to support our financial education program. Scott Hartley, Branch Manager of their SW Barnes Branch, has been a long time supporter of our work, and welcomes our clients who come to them for a "second chance" savings account. Most recently, Scott co-facilitated two of our financial household resiliency classes. Thank you Sterling Bank, your partnership means a lot to us!
We are thrilled to welcome our new Loan Program Coordinator, Emmy Callero to the team. Emmy joins us after finishing her Master's in Public Administration from Portland State University. In addition to her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Spanish, Emmy has worked as a teacher in Latin America, a social worker and legal assistant for recent immigrants in Portland, a consultant for emerging social entrepreneurs in India, and with Adelante Mujeres to design and implement a community based program evaluation. One of Emmy's focal areas will be to expand our outreach and service provision to the Latino community. Please join us in welcoming Emmy to Innovative Changes and stay tuned for a full interview with Emmy in next month's newsletter!
In other exciting news, the financial planning day co-hosted by Innovative Changes and The Bradley Angle House (BAH) was a huge success. It was held on April 27th at the Lloyd Center as part of the national Money Smart Week. As Missy Kloos, Community-Based Services Manager at BAH reports, "This event reached close to 30 individuals that are committed to better managing their personal finances. Event attendees who completed exit surveys overwhelmingly reported that they are very likely to apply or take action on something they learned in class, which speaks to the effectiveness of this type of event." The success of the event, a combination of workshops and individualized financial planning services, has led us to plan more financial planning days in the coming year. We are involved in the city-wide financial planning day to be held in October, and more details will follow.
In addition to our regular workshops, seminars and coaching sessions, we are taking our financial education on the road! We will be at the "Good in the Hood" Annual Music and Food Festival June 23rd and 24th, offering mini-seminars and coaching sessions. Be sure to stop by our booth to say hi! The festival will be in the Lillis-Albina Park located on N. Flint and Russell Streets.
One of the ways we expand our capacity to provide more coaching and seminars is to use trained volunteers. Many of the graduates of our women's borrowers support groups have become very effective coaches and presenters. Our client spotlight on Landra is a great example of our clients taking on this new role in our organization. This recent development has made me think a lot about change agents. Every day I see clients change the way they deal with their money. They take control, act with purpose and make good decisions. They have become their own catalyst for change. Some of them, like Landra, find further purpose in helping others, participating in peer groups, and as coaches and presenters. They enjoy mutual learning and growth, and help each other instill change that will stick. As Landra says, "Let go and prepare for change. You're not alone and you have something to contribute to others."
Here's to letting go!
All the best,
Last fall, Talia did a seminar on "Teaching Your Kids about Money" at a local Head Start meeting. Landra was in attendance, eager to learn and to share with the other parents in the class. "Originally, I attended the presentation because I thought it would be cool to learn tips on how to educate my son about money. Little did I know it, I enjoyed the presentation so much that I wanted to learn more. I also wanted to be in an environment where talking about money wasn't taboo," says Landra. She followed up with Talia and came in for a coaching appointment to look at her budget and credit. From there she was hooked: from client, to volunteer, to mentor, Landra fills many roles at Innovative Changes.
At Landra's coaching appointment Talia told her of the Women's Borrower Support group that Innovative Changes (IC$) was hosting. IC$ convened a group of women to learn from each other, problem solve and hold each other accountable to meeting financial and other life goals. Landra signed up on the spot and reflects, "It was truly a great experience. Often times people feel as if they are the only ones with questions, concerns or the desire to do better, but all it took was one person to truly open up. What I took from the Women's group was how it's never too early to talk to your kids about money. If you put things into practice early eventually things will sink in."
A big piece that drew Landra to the Women's Group was the opportunity to become a mentor for other women. Eager to pass on her lessons learned and help people work through tough situations, Landra joined a cohort of Tax Time Educators to provide financial education to CASH Oregon customers. Landra committed several hours a week to facilitating workshops on budgeting, credit and savings in the CASH waiting room and meeting with people one on one to discuss best practices in financial management. Landra says, "As a tax time educator I got the opportunity to talk about many of the things we discussed in the women's group. I like that because it's a reminder and the information sticks with me."
|Partner Spotlight: Bradley Angle House
Last month, Money Smart week swept the nation. Financial education was all the buzz as organizations across the country hosted events that helped people develop money management skills. One of these events was Make Change Now!, a day full of workshops and financial planners available to meet with anyone for free. Who was behind this wonderful event you may ask? Well, Innovative Changes and our partners Missy Kloos and Suzzane Crawtha at Bradley Angle House (BAH). Missy, the Community Based Service Manager, came up with the idea at a Jumpstart meeting. We were thrilled with the outcome of the event; it was a great model of collaboration between our programs to meet a real community need, so we wanted to highlight our longstanding partnership with Bradley Angle in this issue of the newsletter.
The mission of Bradley Angle is to offer survivors of domestic and sexual violence options for safety, empowerment, healing and hope, while collaborating with our communities to create social change. Missy Kloos came to BAH five years ago as an intern through her graduate program at Portland State University in social work. With a background in women's studies and past volunteer work with domestic violence survivors, she was tasked with expanding their community services and founding the economic empowerment program. Operating out of the Healing Roots Center, the economic empowerment program has grown tremendously in the past five years. Its programs include a Making Sense Class, an eight week financial education course in which participants are guided to examine their financial situation, set short- and long-term financial goals, and work towards increasing their financial self-sufficiency; one on one economic advocacy; education and small business individual development accounts; and a private matched savings program that help participants save for smaller short term goals. In addition, through a partnership with IC$, Bradley Angle offers loans to economic empowerment graduates as another way to take steps to get ahead.
Missy reflects, "I've seen people come to our program that are living in an emergency shelter and are in a financial and overall crisis. Through our program they take a leap in addressing financial barriers and have especially benefited doing that with a combination of peer support in a group setting and one on one." Missy explains that access to incentives such as saving accounts and IC$ loans to support savings goals help participants take further steps to move into safe environments.
Missy recalls one recent Making Sense graduate who, with support from BAH and IC$, took out a loan to offset her costs of starting a small business. She successfully paid back the loan to build her credit and is doing well. "This is a good example of how taking a first step to address scary and unknown barriers can open doors for taking control of your life to make a change," says Missy.
|Financial Education Galore:
Upcoming Financial Household Resiliency Workshops:
We are now offering our FHR workshops every other month! The next workshops are coming up in June and then again in August. See the June schedule below and sign up today!
Tuesday, June 5th 5:30-7:30 pm: Making Ends Meet
Tuesday, June 12th 5:30-7:30 pm: Budgeting and Saving
Tuesday, June 19th 5:30-7:30 pm: Hands-On Banking
Tuesday, June 26th 5:30-7:30 pm: Building, Repairing and Protecting Credit
Our classes will be held near our Lloyd Center office on the 3rd floor of the Lloyd Center Mall (between Nordstroms and the food court), 2025 Lloyd Center.
To Register: visit our website or call or email Misha at (503)-249-5205/ email@example.com.
The classes and the seminar are open to everyone. The classes can be taken individually or as a series. They are $5 each and $15 for all four classes. Fee waivers are available for those who qualify.
Student Loan Consolidation and Repayment Plans
In this workshop participants will learn how to take an inventory of outstanding student loans, keep student loans in good standing, and create a manageable plan for repayment. Other topics of interest will include: the consequences of student loan default, how to rehabilitate student loans that are in default, the Income Based Repayment plan and its benefits, and the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program.
- Tuesday, June 5th at the Albina Library from 6:30-7:30pm
- Saturday, June 9th at the Kenton Library from 12:30-1:30pm.
Join attorney Elizabeth Hallock and IC$ to discuss the basics of bankruptcy. When is a good time to file for bankruptcy? What are the different types of bankruptcy? How will this effect my credit in the long term? Gain access to resources and more at this informative seminar!
- Tuesday, July 17th, 2025 Lloyd Center Mall from 5:30-6:30
No registration required for seminar hosted at libraries. Please sign up for the Lloyd Center seminars by calling or emailing Misha at (503)-249-5205/ firstname.lastname@example.org.
|Innovative Changes IDAs for Post-Secondary Education: Spots still open!
The IC$ IDA program offers a 3:1 match for those saving to attend an institution of higher education. Our program is the only education IDA open to the public (although we suspect our spots will go fast) and participants must meet IDA criteria specified on our website as well as attend an IDA orientation to be eligible to apply.
If you are interested in the IDA program, or know someone who may be interested, sign up for an IDA orientations today! The orientations will be held on (choose one):
- Tuesday, May 15th from 5:30-7pm
- Monday, June 18th from 5:30-7pm
To register click here. For more information on our IDA program please visit our website or contact Talia, email@example.com.
You Can Help!
You care about helping people achieve and maintain household stability. Now you can join our efforts at Innovative Changes as we expand our reach to serve more clients. Your generous donation will be put to good use!
Be a credit builder:
- $50 covers the cost to deliver and manage a credit builder loan so a borrower can establish and/or increase their credit score.
- $150 provides the capital for credit builder loan for an individual to establish or increase their credit score. (Your donation can be made in monthly installments of just $12.50).
Be a stabilizer:
- $75 covers the cost to deliver and manage a responsible, small dollar installment loan so a borrower can work through a short-term financial need in a manner that sets them up for success.
- $600 provides the capital for a responsible, small dollar installment loan so a borrower can take control and move forward to improving his or her situation. (Just $50 per month).
Be an asset builder:
- $25 sponsors an individual to attend our 4-part household resiliency financial education class on cash flow planning, budgeting, saving, banking, and credit.
- $120 covers 6 months of intensive individual financial coaching for one family.
- $150 Funds the costs of developing and delivering a monthly financial seminar on topics such as tax time preparation, consolidating student loans and talking to your kids about money.
- $500 Enables us to reach more clients with more workshops, coaching and seminars.
Monthly giving program:
Whatever amount you can afford, you can set it up for monthly automatic payments to ease your cash flow. If you have bill pay service with your bank you can set up Innovative Changes to receive regular monthly payments. If you prefer, we can process a monthly ACH transaction on your behalf. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up your monthly giving program.
Thank you for your support!
As of 5/14/2012
350, averaging $469.94 for a total of $164,478.20
Revolved amount: $124,020.66
Repaid loans: 182
Financial education clients: