Provides opportunities and resources for volunteers to help struggling homeowners
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- USA Freedom Corps (USAFC) Director Henry Lozano today launched a Financial Literacy Volunteer Initiative to mobilize volunteers that can help homeowners improve their financial literacy and avoid foreclosure in the wake of America’s transitioning housing market. This new initiative provides tools and resources, available at www.volunteer.gov, for Americans interested in sharing their financial services, nonprofits in need of skilled volunteers, and homeowners seeking financial guidance.
One resource provided through this initiative is a searchable database of volunteer opportunities pertaining to financial literacy through the USAFC Volunteer Network, the nation’s largest online clearinghouse of volunteer opportunities. The USAFC Volunteer Network helps volunteers easily find ways to share their financial skills and experience, while serving as a free tool for nonprofits to recruit new skilled volunteers. Additionally, community organizations can utilize the President’s Volunteer Service Award as a tool to reward and incentivize local volunteers. The initiative also helps subprime homeowners in need of immediate financial assistance access resources to refinance their home and avoid foreclosure, such as the HOPE NOW 24-hour toll-free credit counselor hotline.
“The USA Freedom Financial Literacy Volunteer Initiative provides important tools and resources to help volunteers across the country offer a hand to homeowners in a time of need,” Director Henry Lozano said.
Also today, John Bryant, vice chairman of the President's Advisory Council on Financial Literacy, touted the new USA Freedom Corps Financial Literacy Volunteer Initiative during a roundtable discussion with Secretary of the Treasury Henry Paulson and community leaders in Oakland, Calif. Established in January, the Council works to promote and enhance financial literacy among the American people. Bryant underscored the importance of ensuring Americans struggling in today’s difficult housing market have access to tools and resources to improve their financial literacy.
“I applaud the White House USA Freedom Corps in creating the new Financial Literacy Volunteer Initiative, a national resource, accessible at the local level in every community across America, where individuals can sign up to teach youth financial literacy in schools and community based organizations, adults in the workplace, and for those with experience in credit and mortgage finance, possibly counseling those impacted by the subprime mortgage crisis,” said John Bryant, vice chairman of the President's Advisory Council on Financial Literacy.
During the event, Secretary Paulson presented a lifetime President’s Volunteer Service Award to Gayliene Omary, a Wholesale Account Executive for Bank of America who has dedicated more than 27,000 hours of volunteer service over the course of her lifetime. The lifetime award recognizes outstanding volunteers who have contributed over 4,000 hours of service. Through Operation Hope, Inc., a nonprofit organization that provides economic tools and services, Omary volunteers in California schools teaching students at various grade levels about the importance of making wise financial decisions. Last year, Omary received Operation Hope’s “Banking on Our Future Volunteer of The Year” award to honor her community service. In 2002, President Bush issued a national call to service and created the USA Freedom Corps to help all Americans serve causes greater than self. As a signature White House initiative, USA Freedom Corps works to foster a culture of service, citizenship and responsibility, and connect Americans with opportunities serve their country, their community and their neighbors. Since President Bush launched the initiative, volunteering is at historically high levels and last year alone, more than 60 million volunteers across America helped sustain social services and aid others in need, both at home and abroad. To find or promote financial literacy volunteer opportunities in your area and learn more about the President’s call to service, visit: www.volunteer.gov. For more information on the President’s Advisory Council on Financial Literacy, visit: www.treasury.gov/offices/domestic-finance/financial-institution/fin-education/council/index.shtml. ###