A First: Portland’s Economic Empowerment Program for DV Survivors
“Anna had been applying for jobs for months with no luck. On week five, she came to class with good news—she got a job! Her economic action plan was taking off. She revised her budget, printed her credit report and met with a financial planner to discuss how to work on improving her credit score. Little by little, she’s paying off her debt. She worked with one creditor on a settlement. Her income is steady, allowing her to work on finding housing.” —Making Cent$ facilitator
Economic abuse impacts the lives of most, if not all, survivors of domestic violence. Controlling or withholding access to economic resources, stealing money, ruining credit, identity theft, sabotaging a partner’s job, and depriving someone from meeting basic needs are tactics used by individuals who choose to be abusive towards their partners or loved ones. With no other local agency doing this work, it became apparent that Bradley Angle needed a program to address the impact of economic abuse in the lives of our participants. The Economic Empowerment Program was created for this very purpose.
The main component of the project is our eight-week financial education classes, Making Cent$, where we provide onsite childcare, meals, and a financial incentive for class attendance.
Participants are guided to examine their financial situation, set short- and long-term financial goals, and work towards increasing their financial self-sufficiency.
Class topics include banking basics, money values, credit repair, tax credits, and creating individualized economic action plans where participants identify short and long term financial goals.
Volunteer Financial Planners are on hand to assist in facilitating classes as well as to provide one-on-one financial planning. Job search assistance, post-secondary education opportunities, small business development, and credit-building resources are supported by various partners in our community.
Through education, we hope to guide participants to address the effects of economic abuse in their own lives, and feel more empowered in their financial situation.
Individual Development Accounts
Through a partnership with CASA of Oregon (VIDA Collaborative), we are excited to offer Individual Development Accounts (IDAs) to survivors of domestic violence. An IDA is a type of matched savings program, targeting low-income individuals to support savings and financial health. The amount a participant saves is matched 3:1 (for every $1 saved, you earn $3 in matching funds!). Survivors can use IDAs to save up for post-secondary education and/or small business start ups and expansions.
Recognizing that we all need access to short-term credit sometimes to manage unexpected expenses or sudden losses of income, Bradley Angle and Innovative Changes have partnered to offer Self-Sufficiency Loans, a responsible alternative to payday loans. Loans range from $100 - $500, may be repaid in six to twelve months, and are reported to the major credit bureaus to help borrowers build their credit. Loans can be used for things like averting financial emergencies (such as a utility shutoff or eviction); achieving household stability by paying a rental deposit or making car repairs; paying down other high-cost debt like outstanding payday loans or accounts in collections; or preparing for asset building opportunities by building credit. Click here to find out more about our Micro-Loan program.
For more information on our Economic Empowerment program, call 503.595.9591 ex. 304
There are some children who can narrate their entire history of domestic violence through their actions.
When 4-year old Isaac came to shelter, his verbal skills were delayed, common for many young children who have witnessed domestic violence. He hit, slapped, spit, and pulled hair of all other female participants- both child and adult- as easily as waving “hi”. Isaac would frequently throw... Read More »
We are grateful for the support of our community partners >
BRADLEY ANGLE•5432 N. Albina Ave.•Portland, OR 97217•503.232.1528