"I learned how to handle my money, and for the first time learned that I had to handle MY own money - it wasn't just something my husband did."
"I learned to start saving one dollar per day; I don't have to save a LOT to save at all."
Those are quotes from two DVCC clients who recently attended our new Financial Empowerment series. Next to dealing with the emotional toll domestic violence takes on one's psyche, one of the biggest challenges faced by victims leaving a relationship is money - how to make enough to live on their own and how to handle their finances.
DVCC is helping its clients meet that challenge by offering training and information on financial management. Two groups in Norwalk and two in Stamford each met for four weekly sessions to learn about how to make and balance a budget, why to have a bank account and the different types of bank accounts available, reasons and ways to save, and credit. DVCC Housing Advocate Katie Evans created the curriculum for the series and worked with our Spanish speaking counselors to implement the groups. Additionally, Evans is conducting similar financial sessions for residents at the two DVCC SafeHouses.
"For most of the women, this was the first time they had had any budget instruction whatsoever," Evans said. "It is so important and rewarding to help people with skills that not only will serve them in the immediate future, but that they can use for the rest of their lives."