Community Financial Resources (CFR) has launched a new series to highlight the amazing work our partners are doing and the impact these partnerships have on the community. Meet this month's spotlight: New Moms!
New Moms believes in the strength, skills, and potential of all families and communities to pursue and achieve their goals. At New Moms, young moms 24 and under, take powerful first steps toward economic mobility and family well-being. Their 2-Generation approach puts families experiencing poverty in control of their goals and unleashes their potential. New Moms partners with families to construct the foundation of well-being by strengthening core life skills, incorporating early childhood development supports, building pathways to and preparation for education and employment, and expanding positive social networks and access to community resources.
About the Partnership
For three years, New Moms has partnered with Community Financial Resources to provide young moms with free, FDIC-insured bank accounts through US Bank. Access to quality, free banking products is just one tool used to advance racial equity in the face of generations of financial injustice against Black and Latinx communities.
New Moms has also been exploring direct cash transfers as part of a larger initiative to advance economic mobility for young families. As part of their COVID-19 response, New Moms partnered with Family Independence Initiative and the #GiveTogetherNow Chicago Fund to provide direct financial relief to families in their programming who had lost their jobs due to the pandemic. Within the span of two weeks in late April, their dedicated program staff helped 45 families who were experiencing employment loss access an unconditional cash transfer of $500 each. In total, $22,500 was directly transferred into bank accounts of young moms across all New Moms’ programs!
According to New Moms, “CFR was instrumental in this process because you facilitate New Moms’ USBank Online Account/Focus Card platform – which is how the cash transfers were distributed to our participants.”
New Moms has reported this work has had a positive impact on the community:
“Young moms get banked (many for the first time ever), open savings accounts and earn interest (many for the first time ever), and get direct deposit (many for the first time ever) upon entrance into our programs.
Launching the Focus Card has also opened the door for our organization to become better equipped to partner with young moms in a variety of financial goals. We are continuing to develop the financial coaching knowledge, curriculum, and practical tools needed to address goals around credit, debt reduction, financial aid for education, and more.
And, CFR introduced us to other fantastic partners, such as the Economic Security Project and Family Independence Initiative.”
"We've been lucky to partner with CFR since 2017 when we decided to bolster the financial access opportunities for young moms in our program. Now, all young moms at New Moms can enroll in the CFR and US Bank Focus Card program; for many, this is their first relationship with a non-predatory financial institution and a powerful first step towards economic mobility. Additionally, CFR has helped us improve our own staff knowledge of and comfort with financial concepts, tools, and skills so we can be more effective coaches to young moms setting and progressing towards their financial goals. We are grateful to CFR for encouraging us to expand our vision for financial capabilities at New Moms: exploring partnerships with new financial partners, building out unconditional cash transfer opportunities, and taking advantage of fintech platforms that could support our mission.”
-Dana Emanuel, Director of Learning and Innovation at New Moms
As our partners at New Moms note, “Helping our participants access quality, free banking products is one of the ways New Moms is addressing racial and economic injustice for the young families of color we serve. We want to promote financial inclusion and wealth-generation for black and brown communities which have been routinely discriminated against by financial institutions. Additionally, it’s about reducing financial stress so young moms can plan for their short and long-term goals and have the flexibility and autonomy to make their own decisions about their finances. For three years, we’ve partnered with Community Financial Resources to get young moms banked – many for the first time – because of our organizations’ shared commitment to social justice, especially economic justice.” The team at CFR is proud to partner with New Moms and share New Moms critical work towards justice and uplifting our community. Learn more about New Moms programs here.