Financial Literacy Program
Our Financial Literacy Program has been designed to appeal to an audience ages 12 and up. Our Financial Instructor, Wade Wheeler joined our team and provided the learning material needed for our participants. The Family Self Sufficiency Program, created this opportunity to help our community with savings, budgeting, credit repair, credit build, understanding sources of income, and creating financial goals. With many of our participants living on fixed and limited incomes, our goal is to help them repair old habits resulting in debt and find ways to build financial reserves. As a working class community a Financial Literacy program can be the link needed to help a household not live “paycheck to paycheck,” but to live with a “need to save” state of mind. Sessions are held in a group setting however, due to the uniqueness of each participant’s financial situation, one-on-one sessions are also encouraged. The Housing Authority of Plainfield’s summer youth workers were successful in participation of our Financial Literacy Program. Our goal was to implement a series of sessions that prepared our youth for ways of making a dollar stretch, in efforts of helping them preserve their summer earnings.
Thus far, sessions have been a success with having faithful participants, having them set goals during class and showing progress after each goal has been reached.
Our Nutrition Program appeals to participants ages 12 (or younger) and up. The S8 FSS program has teamed up ‘Get Moving, Get Healthy NJ’ creating an awesome on-line webinar. These sessions provides vital information for ways of living and eating healthy on a budget. Knowing that most of our participants come from fixed and minimal income, healthy eating can be out of the budget. However, we have resources that allow for tips and tricks for our participants to shop healthy for their household. The nutritional program encourages a healthy lifestyle, especially healthy eating and physical activity. We partnered with ‘Get Moving, Get Healthy NJ’ to present our participants with a program designed to improve their health and lifestyles, including a section specific to the youth.
Our Nutrition program is set to begin late September 2014, with weekly sessions for an entire year. The FSS coordinator, Nydiadra Rivers will host the webinar and present the materials given by the ‘Get Moving, Get Healthy’ committee.
Computer Literacy Program
Our Computer Literacy Program also appeals to an audience ages 12 and up. It is set to take off late September 2014 and will run parallel with the other programs hosted by the FSS program. Steve Taylor, whom has previously worked with our participants a few years ago, agreed to do so for a 2nd successful session. The sessions will build off of one another beginning with the basic material, segueing into complex and sophisticated teaching. The idea behind our Computer Literacy Program is not only basic computer knowledge however, more so job readiness and computer skill building. Participants will be presented with material that covers navigating through a Windows based PC, keyboarding, navigating through the internet, Microsoft Office, and other skills provided by the instructor. Sessions will be set in small groups to help create a less intimidating environment for the novice, allowing extra time for questions to be answered and answers to be explained.
Many of Financial Literacy Participants are also looking forward to the Computer Literacy Program, to help them continue progression in different aspects of their livelihood. Creating these programs for our participants allows them to open doors to better standards of living, employment, and environment; steps closer to self sufficiency.
Youth Empowerment Program
The Housing Authority of Plainfield’s Family Self Sufficiency (HAPFSS) and Premier Community Development Corporation (PCDC) finds success in their youth program series premier:
Working with young men and women (ages 13-18) alike, the program partnered with other non-profit organizations’ YES Girl Inc. and C.U.R.E. Group to facilitate the youth to self-empowerment. The mission of self-empowerment was channeled through the many avenues in which our youth are exposed to everyday. Topics of financial literacy, positive social capital, sexual education, social etiquette, hygiene, peer pressure, college preparation, creative self-expression—were all building blocks of the six week program. Aside from the program’s weekly meetings, the youth were also exposed to other special affairs (offered by other agencies within the community) with discussions relevant to the topics deliberated within the program. Strong relationships with our strategic partners is what aided in a successful outcome as well as positive feedback from the youth who participated. The program intermission was used as a time to give thanks to our funders, as well as shed light on the bright young women and men in whom they invested.
As demanded by the youth, the HAPFSS & PCDC will look to jumpstart the next series in January 2016.