Community Roundup: GEAR UP, Lutheran Settlement House’s Economic Justice Group, SpArc Webinar, and More

Apr 1, 2021

On Tuesday, March 9, PFCU’s Erin Ellis met with students in the School District of Philadelphia’s Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP) to discuss what it means to pay yourself first, as well as various considerations to keep in mind when setting goals. GEAR UP is a competitive grant program of the U.S. Department of Education that aims to provide students in low-income communities the college preparation and awareness necessary to help bridge the economic gap between themselves and their more financially advantaged peers through a college education. The program engages students in sixth or seventh grade and continues through high school graduation, providing comprehensive academic, mentoring, and college guidance services.

On Thursday, March 18, Erin spoke with individuals in the Economic Justice group from Lutheran Settlement House’s Bilingual Domestic Violence program about where they can find help with taxes and unemployment. Erin also addressed participants’ banking questions and concerns.

On Tuesday, March 23, Erin hosted a webinar with SpArc Philadelphia employees, where she shared ways to balance income and expenses, specifically offering different strategies one could leverage to increase income and decrease expenses.

Also on March 23, Erin hosted a Paying for College webinar for both current and non-PFCU members, where she outlined common costs associated with college and provided resources and strategies to help individuals who are starting to map out their financial plan become a responsible borrower. To help attendees leverage the appropriate financial aid, Erin discussed the important role the FAFSA plays in the financial aid process; she also helped attendees understand the Student Aid Report (SAR), and therefore how much money the school will give; the Expected Family Contribution (EFC) so they could anticipate how much money their family is expected to pay; and outlined the differences between different federal and private loans.

On Wednesday, March 24, Erin met with OIC SOAR Program staff to share resources about where their clients can find help on a variety of financial issues surrounding taxes, unemployment, mortgage, and rental assistance. She also provided staff with some helpful tools so they can help their clients better budget their resources.

On Tuesday, March 30, Erin hosted a Saving and Planning for a Mortgage webinar for PFCU members, where she discussed what one needs to know in order to prepare for qualifying for a mortgage and owning a home. Specifically, she outlined how to figure out how much one would need to need to save, what credit score is needed to be approved for a mortgage, and how much one will need to borrow when they apply.

If you are interested in hosting a seminar in your community or at your place of employment, PFCU’s seminars are always free and offered on a variety of topics. We will work with you to schedule the most convenient time for a virtual seminar. If you would like to schedule a one- or two-hour financial education seminar, please contact Erin Ellis at financialeducation@pfcu.com.

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