Goodwill Manasota Receives Grant for Financial Literacy Training

The Giving Coast

Pictured: Goodwill Manasota GoodPartner Coach Dana Knuuti (left) with team member Dennis Burton. Photo Courtesy of Goodwill Manisota.

Goodwill Manasota is proud to not only provide jobs for team members who may have barriers to employment but also offer on-the-clock coaching, training and education to boost employees’ job skills and earning potential. One area of concern for Goodwill is that many team members lack financial literacy skills. To address this issue, the Wells Fargo Foundation has recently awarded a $10,000 grant in support of Goodwill’s efforts to provide financial literacy skills training to its team members, through its GoodPartner Coach program. The funds will pay a portion of the salary of one Goodwill GoodPartner Coach. Every Goodwill employee is assigned a GoodPartner Coach. These coaches work with team members to do needs assessments to determine barriers to self-sufficiency and identify areas that could be strengthened through training as well as determine access to basic needs such as housing, food and healthcare. Other program elements include helping to write an individualized development plan and offering case management services to address any issues that might be a barrier to their success.

Financial literacy is a key component of the GoodPartner Coach program, with information to help team members become banked, develop a personal budget, guidance on improving credit scores, and even assistance – through its Homebuyer’s Club – for employees seeking to purchase a home for the first time. When emergency financial needs emerge, coaches are able to direct the team member to a resource – whether internal or community-based – to help meet the need. Coaches assign online financial literacy skills training to employees using Goodwill’s Learning Management System. In-person budgeting classes are also available to those who want more in-depth training. GoodPartner Coaches also provide training regarding the benefits of filing taxes, utilizing VITA (free tax assistance) sites, and how the Earned Income Tax Credit works. In partnership with United Way Suncoast, Goodwill hosts VITA sites at its offices and trains its coaches to provide support at these sites.

Pictured: Goodwill Manasota GoodPartner Coach Dana Knuuti (left) with team member Dennis Burton. Photo Courtesy of Goodwill Manisota.

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