Forsyth County took a giant step forward today in efforts to increase the financial stability of low and moderate income families. After months of design and planning, The POINT- a mobile financial education and training vehicle- was officially launched.
The POINT resembles a bus on the outside but inside it has all the tools necessary to help families access to mainstream financial services, receive debt and credit counseling, get tax preparation and employment assistance, and learn how to build assets and financial stability. This mobile unit will allow service providers to reach those areas of the community where services are needed most and where transportation is often a barrier to obtaining financial services.
The POINT is the collaborative work of United Way of Forsyth County, Financial Pathways of the Piedmont, Experiment in Self-Reliance (ESR), and Goodwill Industries of Northwest North Carolina and was funded through a grant by Wells Fargo. As part of a commitment to help its customers succeed financially and strengthen the communities it serves, Wells Fargo selected the United Way of Forsyth County as one of eight local United Ways in key markets that received a three-year, $300,000 grant. The grants were aimed at promoting financial capability of low- and moderate- income households through access to educational programs and services.
“I’m so proud to see what a significant impact our initial investment had on the Winston-Salem community and pleased that this effort is being expanded to reach even more families in need of financial literacy and assistance programs,” said Leslie Hayes, Wells Fargo’s Business Banking division manager for the Carolinas. “One of Wells Fargo’s top priorities is to help our customers make responsible money management decisions in order to build a productive and stable future, and a valuable resource like The POINT will empower them to do just that.”
In recognition of the value The POINT brings to the community, Mayor Allen Joines of Winston-Salem issued a proclamation declaring January 15, 2015 as “The POINT Day”. “We are very grateful to have such a powerful tool as The POINT to help us address the root causes of poverty in our community,” said Mayor Joines. “With almost 1 in 5 of our residents living in poverty, it is critical to develop creative ways to help our families succeed and Winston-Salem to remain a thriving economic environment.”
Community residents and organizations can find out more about The POINT, including the schedule and how to request The POINT, by visiting financialpaths.org.