Federation, CDCUs Get Grant To Expand Financial Ed To Seniors

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NEW YORK-The National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions has received a grant to pilot a nationwide program that will help low-income seniors gain financial security.

The grant, from The Atlantic Philanthropies, will go to eight CDCUs, with the funds used to reach out to older adults struggling with debt and limited resources. Savings programs, low-interest loans, consumer counseling and debt-reduction plans will be offered as the "Creating a Path to Economic Security" campaign goes into action, according to the Federation.

Participating CDCUs will also be partnering with the National Council on Aging (NCOA) and their nationwide network of "Economic Security Service Centers," as well as other organizations that provide one-on-one counseling to help seniors regain their economic footing.

'Battered By Debt'

In a released statement, Federation Senior Program Officer Melanie Stern, who leads the Federation program, said, "Many older Americans who are struggling do not believe it's possible to gain a measure of financial well-being at their age. Some have been battered by debt, while others have been pummeled by rising prices, or preyed upon by so-called 'payday' lenders and unscrupulous debt consolidation scammers. Our emphasis on economic security, offered at the local level by well-established, federally-regulated, and consumer-friendly credit unions, could be a real ray of hope."

The Atlantic Philanthropies is a foundation that works to put in place policies and programs that will create long-term benefits for disadvantaged populations.

The Federation said it and the selected CDCUs will also be collaborating with several national organizations working with older adults in implementing the campaign and in disseminating information gleaned from it, including the National Council on Aging, the National Disability Institute and others.

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