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Community Services and Revitalization Newsroom

Louisville Celebrates First Graduating Class of Community Financial Empowerment Certification Program

Wednesday March 26, 2014

Media Contacts: Debbie Belt, 574-6587 / 303-6167
Chris Poynter, 574-4546 / 396-2015

Louisville Celebrates First Graduating Class of Community
Financial Empowerment Certification Program

Graduates trained to help move people along the pathway to financial stability

The first graduating class to complete Louisville's new Community Financial Empowerment Certification (CFEC) program will be recognized at an event this Thursday, March 27. This pilot group of 15 social services providers, along with their supervisors and agency directors, will gather at the Catholic Enrichment Center, 3146 W. Broadway at 1:30 p.m.

Louisville Metro Department of Community Services and Revitalization has worked with a variety of partners to create the Community Financial Empowerment Certification (CFEC) in response to a growing need among clients to obtain assistance creating budgets, developing financial goals and building assets. The CFEC provides a financial empowerment framework for Louisville's service providers, equipping them with tools and knowledge to move clients out of the crisis-to-crisis cycle and toward a more stable future.

CFEC Level 1 graduates completed a series of three workshops geared towards building their capacity to move their clients along the pathway to financial stability including: Financial Empowerment 101: The Basics; Financial Empowerment 102: Behavioral Economics; and Financial Empowerment 201: Conversations and Tools. Graduates from this first group represent several agencies including Community Services and Revitalization (CSR), Family Scholar House, Neighborhood Place, and St. Vincent de Paul.

Goals of the Financial Empowerment Certification Program:
  • Create a common understanding of the financial issues and challenges facing clients
  • Increase case managers' and direct service staff’s confidence regarding financial issues
  • Provide guidance on when and how to integrate financial empowerment into service delivery
  • Raise awareness about sound financial education standards and practices
  • Create a support system for case managers
  • Help sustain and expand financial empowerment efforts in our community

"This Certification program marks an important milestone in our community-wide effort to provide a thoroughly researched and experience-driven standard for financial empowerment in Louisville”, states Virginia Peck, director of CSR. “We believe this work can have a positive impact on the service provider, the person being served and their household, as well as the entire community."

All CFEC Level 1 workshops are offered free of charge and are open to any social service staff. Visit CSR’s Financial Empowerment/economic Development’s website or call 574-5156 for more information about upcoming learning opportunities including future plans for a Financial Empowerment Level 2 Certification.

The CFEC graduation coincides with the city's inaugural Financial Fitness Day at Catholic Enrichment Center from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., which offers a full day of financial planning events and resources with free food, prizes, and more.

Community Financial Empowerment Certification Background
In 2011, Louisville Metro Community Services and Revitalization (CSR) was awarded a grant from Living Cities to build on Louisville’s foundational work and create a service provider approach that embeds financial empowerment into the homeless service provider system and becomes a model to be incorporated into all human service systems in the community. The Money Talks project was born out of this grant.

Since then, CSR has worked with community partners to expand the financial empowerment framework and increase service providers' ability to increase their own financial knowledge and examine their own decision-making; to have meaningful and honest conversations with the people they serve about managing money, choosing financial services and products, and building on assets; and to move the people they serve along the pathway to financial stability. The Community Financial Empowerment Certification, presented by CSR's
Financial Empowerment/economic Development (FEeD) division with the support of the Center for Non-Profit Excellence and the PNC Foundation, is part of these continuing efforts.