Attendees at a new class are learning computer skills while also learning tools for managing money. The class, offered through Rural Neighborhoods and HELP, was initiated by several graduates of Rural Neighborhood’s Resident Leadership Academy who recognized a need for these skills. The graduates met with HELP and Rural Neighborhoods to arrange for the class to be offered at Eden Gardens apartments and to incorporate both computer and financial literacy skills. Though most attendees already access the Internet on their smartphones, some have never worked on a computer. For this reason, learning computer skills was extremely important.
The solution came through HELP which received a grant to purchase laptop computers and provide classes in Immokalee on managing money. The class was a perfect fit with residents’ needs and after spending several sessions learning how to use a computer and navigate the Internet, attendees then worked through modules of FDIC’s Money Smart program. The FDIC program is offered in English, Spanish, and Creole and provides instruction on budgeting, saving money, and building credit. The goal is to help families learn how to handle their money wisely and avoid predatory lending or other expensive mistakes.
The computer class is one of several initiatives being offered in the Eden Park-Esperanza Place (EP2) neighborhoods to help residents improve their skills and become more engaged in their community. For more information on the EP2 program, contact Dottie Cook at 239-658-3315. To schedule a money management class through HELP, contact Michael Puchalla at 239-434-2397.