Birmingham launches FREE service to help residents overcome financial hardships due to COVID-19

Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund
CFE helping people before COVID-19. Photo via Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund’s Facebook page

The pandemic has led to financial hardships for many. Now, through a partnership between the City of Birmingham and Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund (CFE), Birmingham residents can receive free services that can help.

About the Program

The program, known as Financial Navigators, offers all Birmingham residents free one-on-one assistance help with:

  • Personal financial issues
  • Identifying immediate action steps to manage expenses and maximizing income
  • Making referrals to other services such as utilities assistance, unemployment insurance eligibility and emergency loans
Birmingham, Randall Woodfin
Mayor Randall Woodfin. Photo via Randall Woodfin’s Facebook page, taken before COVID-19.

In a press conference held today, Monday, October 26, Woodfin stated, “The financial navigators program has the knowledge to connect our people, our residents, to meet them where they are and take them to the next level. Their services are a resource we are so proud to offer our residents. But it’s also a point where we feel we can give our residents hope and direction in such trying times.”

The Financial Navigators program was made possible through an $80K grant from the CFE Fund, who along with providing grant funding, also gave significant technical assistance and training to start the program in Birmingham and other cities and counties across the nation. This initiative is supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Citi Foundation, JPMorgan Chase & Co. and the Wells Fargo Foundation.

In the same press conference, CEO Jonathan Mintz of the CFE Fund stated:

“It will allow Birmingham residents to get very specific help. When people are in trouble with a medical issue, they don’t need a website, they need a doctor. When people are in trouble with their finances, they don’t need financial literacy, they need an expert who can walk them through what the options are, how to prioritize, how to connect to various local state and federal services that are available to make a difference. 

At the CFE Fund, we are in over 100 cities and counties across the country, but in this particular program, [Birmingham is] right at the forefront.”

How to access the FREE Financial Navigator

Access the Financial Navigator via phone or internet. Photo by Meghan Schiereck via Unsplash

Birmingham residents with internet access can connect with the Financial Navigator by completing this short interest form

For residents with no internet access, call 205.259.7836 and leave a message requesting assistance. A financial expert will return your call and help you complete the interest form. 

Organizations across Birmingham may also refer clients directly to a financial navigator.

Find more info on the Financial Navigator here.

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