Increasing Financial Stability

What is the issue?
One out of every three families in central Iowa can barely cover basic daily expenses. Iowa ranks second in the nation in the percent of children under 6 years of age with all parents in the labor force. And low wages force many families to go without, or to go into debt. In today's economy, families need enough income to cover rising costs of food, housing, health care, transportation, childcare and clothing - or face painful financial choices.
 
How does United Way help?
1) Create access to family sustaining employment.  Young adults complete their high school diploma or GED and work toward attaining some post-secondary training. Help individuals in skill development, job placement and retention.
2) Individuals/families have access to a safety net of food, shelter, and other income/work supports. Providing basic needs supports for families so they can focus on the activities to become financially stable.
3) Individuals/families build financial stability. This means supporting programs that teach financial literacy and support savings in order to obtain and maintain assets including housing. 
 
GIVE. Your contributions helped:
  • 150 individuals have attained their GED and over 230 individuals are in the process of taking their GED tests.
  • Over 600 individuals are receiving workforce development services, 174 have attained a job with 97.1% job retention after 6 months.
  • 3,689 individuals and families received emergency food assistance and 705 received emergency shelter
  • 2,893 individuals/families had taxes prepared at a United Way sponsored site, securing over $4.3 million in tax credit recovery with an average return of $1,491 tax return per family.
  • 7,137 individuals received legal advice, educational information or referrals to sustain or increase assets.
 
ADVOCATE. Your voice:
  • Increased the Earned Income Tax Credit, made it refundable and ensured marketing of the credit to low income Iowans through multi-year policy efforts.
  • Supported funding for Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites, both at the state and federal level, ensuring low-income Iowans had access to free tax preparation services.
  • Supported an extension unemployment benefits in 2009 for individuals enrolled in a qualified training program.
  • Increased access to financial literacy education by ensuring financial literacy was included in the Iowa Model Core Curriculum when passed in 2008.
 
VOLUNTEER. Your efforts:
  • 200 volunteers who helped process income tax returns at the 9 VITA sites across Central Iowa

 

DOCUMENTS:

 

For more information contact: 

Renee Miller, Chief Community Impact Officer, 515.246.6605 rmiller@unitedwaydm.org