Goodwill receives funding to bolster financial literacy for employees

Three-year grant totaling $165,000 from United Way Suncoast will fund GoodPartner Coach program to lower barriers for success, help team members achieve financial stability

SARASOTA/BRADENTON, FL – In an effort to help community members achieve financial stability, United Way Suncoast has awarded Goodwill Manasota a grant of $165,000 – to be distributed over Goodwill’s next three fiscal years – in support of the GoodPartner Coach program. These funds would assist Goodwill team members in lowering their barriers to self-sufficiency and improving employability skills, with a focus on financial literacy skills.

One of the key mission goals of Goodwill Manasota is to provide employment as well as on-the-job educational opportunities and job skills training so that team members who may have barriers to employment can enjoy success on the job, retain their jobs at Goodwill or launch to better-paying jobs elsewhere, and strengthen their families.

The GoodPartner Coach program provides individuals with disabilities and other barriers to employment with case management services and employability skills training. Of Goodwill’s 700 employees, nearly 70% have a self-identified disability or disadvantage, such as a lack of educational attainment, poverty, lack of financial literacy skills, age, previous criminal record, lack of English fluency, and more. Through the GoodPartner Coach program, team members undergo needs assessments, participate in individual plan development, and take part in classes or training that will address any barriers to career and life success.

Employees who would benefit from financial literacy support develop, with the assistance of their coach, a personal budget; unbanked team members receive assistance setting up a bank account. One-on-one budgeting classes and online budgeting classes are also available to team members who need extra assistance in this area. Additionally, employees who need help improving their credit scores and/or purchasing their first home can receive assistance through Goodwill’s Homebuyer’s Club.

“A lack of financial literacy skills is a major barrier for many of our team members,” said Margie Genter, vice president of mission services for Goodwill Manasota. "Thanks to the generous grant from United Way Suncoast, we can continue to provide important guidance and support to help employees achieve financial stability and get on the path to career and life success."

This grant was provided through the “Financial Stabi