Yesterday, Oakland County Treasurer Andy Meisner announced a $25,000 Community Economic Development Association of Michigan (CEDAM) grant to establish a Financial Empowerment Center in Oakland County. The Center will offer free one-on-one counseling for Oakland County taxpayers on personal finance matters, and the financial counseling will be done by counselors from JVS of Southfield, a community-based nonprofit organization.
“Sometimes families need help tackling financial challenges and they don’t know where to turn,” Meisner said. “This grant gives us another tool to help families plan a budget, assist with credit repair and home mortgages and many other financial issues our residents face.”
On-hand for the ribbon cutting ceremony was Andy Meisner, Oakland County Treasurer; Megan Kursik, Coordinator of the Michigan Communities for Financial Empowerment at CEDAM; and Leah Rosenbaum, JVS president and CEO. This initiative, based on a New York City model currently being replicated nationally through the Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund, builds on services offered by the Treasurers Office to promote financial literacy. These services include on-site housing counseling for mortgage and tax foreclosure prevention, on-site referrals to the Accounting Aide Society, and a multi-media financial literacy art contest for Oakland County high school students.
“CEDAM is excited to work with the City of Grand Haven, the Oakland County Treasurer’s Office and the City of Taylor to help residents create better financial stability through the assistance of free financial counseling,” Kursik said. “The Financial Empowerment Centers in each community will target residents facing challenging financial times, helping consumers to reduce debt, improve credit and plan and save for their futures.”
“Building upon a proven model from New York, this approach fits well with JVS‘ commitment to helping families become financially stable and self-sufficient,” Rosenbaum explained. “We are proud to partner with the Oakland County Treasurer’s Office and CEDAM to teach Oakland County residents how to effectively budget, manage, and save their money.”
The grant is part of a three site Financial Empowerment Initiative replication supported by CEDAM’s Michigan Community for Financial Empowerment network, generously sponsored by the C.S. Mott Foundation. Other grantees are the City of Grand Haven, and the City of Taylor.
For more information, please contact Oakland County Treasurer Andy Meisner at (248) 858-0624, or visit our website at www.oakgov.com/treasurer.