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ALICE Bulletin

COMMUNITY ALICE TASK FORCE

The United Way ALICE Project ® is a study of financial hardship based on local costs of living. 

Objective:  To bring together a cross-section of the community (business, government, nonprofits, faith-based) to understand the challenges facing the ALICE population (ALICE = Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) and determine possible projects the task force can advocate for and/or pursue.

Who is ALICE?– anyone employed and working hard but still struggling to make ends meet and earn enough to get from month to month.  Often there is little leftover for things like savings, preventative maintenance, home ownership, quality childcare, etc. 

The Action Bulletin items below are resources for individuals in our community to share with family, friends, co-workers, employees, and the community.

 

June 2018 Action Bulletin

  • CHANGE YOUR FINANCIAL FUTURE – BankOn North Idaho
  • Without a bank account, it’s hard to respond to emergencies and save for the future.  Life can get complicated and some people lose their banking privileges.  BankOn provides a simple process to help North Idaho individuals get connected to low-cost checking and savings accounts provided by eight local institutions.  To set up a bank account, program participants must complete two, two-hour financial education sessions. Upon completion, participants receive a certificate and access to a participating bank or credit union close to you.  For more information, go to BankOnIdaho.org or text BankOn to 50503.
  • LOOKING FOR AN AFFORDABLE HOUSE TO BUY OR NEEDING INEXPENSIVE HOME REPAIR?
  • Habitat for Humanity North Idaho builds affordable houses with volunteer labor and donated materials and skills.  Homeowners selected for the program are required to contribute sweat equity: work building their own home which creates greater sense of ownership.  They receive a mortgage based on actual cost of building with 0% interest on payments. On average these are $450 payments over 30 years: much less expensive than market-rate rent.  Loans issued by Habitat are subject to fair, equal housing laws re: providing and lending,  To qualify to receive a Habitat home, you must earn 80% local median income and below.  Must be a resident of Kootenai County at least 12 months.  Must have no debt, collections pending or bankruptcy.   Neighborhood revitalization partnerships with other organizations can be more broad based and have wider reach.  Learn more at northidahohabitat.org or call 208-762-4663.
  • WISHING YOU WERE MORE MARKETABLE FOR A NEW JOB OR PROMOTION?
    • A great way to enhance your employability is through acquiring ‘soft skills.’  Soft skills are things like workplace demeanor, organization abilities, appearance and communication.  Contact St. Vincent DePaul (208-762-4663) or Community Action Partnership (208- 664-8757) to learn more about these classes.  They may be the key to your next job or promotion!
  • GREAT PREPARATION IS THE KEY TO SCHOOL SUCCESS FOR YOUR KIDS!
    • Kindergarten Preparedness: the Ready! For Kindergarten program offers free workshops, learning targets, and take-home activities and tools equip parents and caregivers to help toddlers and young children develop early literacy, math and social-emotional skills for success in school. Three workshops per year are offered to Parents/grandparents/caregivers of children 2-5 (before kindergarten) who will attend school in Coeur d'Alene, Post Falls, or Lakeland school district.   Learn more at readyforkindergarten.org/unitedwaynorthidaho

 

April 2018 Action Bulletin

  • FOR EMPLOYERS
    • Idaho Department of Labor presents a "Partners in Buisness Workshop," a 2 hour workshop for emplyers on June 27th, 4-10am focusd on the Mental and Financial Wellness of Employees. Presentations will include ALICE statistics, a poverty simulation, Bank On North Idaho, and a mental health professional. Employers are encouraged to bring an employee to help develop greater understanding of issues facing workers. For more information, contact Stacey Hanlon at stacey.hanlon@labor.idaho.gov.
  • HOUSING
    • Supportive Services for Veteran Families and Goodwill Industries are offering a grant for 6 months rent for families with a verified military service member. For more information, contact Robert at Robert.Shoeman@labor.idaho.gov.
  • PROFESSIONAL/PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT/JOB TRAINING
    • Express Employment Professionals is offering a '2nd Chance' Program for those who struggle to be employable due to lack of positive references, time out of the workforce, or discouragement with the job search. Attend 3 classes, be on time, and participate to receive a certificate of re-employability, a letter of reference, and access to client benefits. For more information call (208) 667-5627 or go to www.expresspros.com.
    • INSPIRE ID is a partnership between the University of Idaho, Innovation Collective, and Apple to deliver high-end skills to achieve upward mobility. Participants will receive custom training and a badge in Swift app development to compete in this multi-trillion dollar industry. Local employers are invited to sponsor/scholarship employees to receive this training. Classes held at Harbor Center and Innovation Den, dates TBD. MacBook Ai laptop required to complete the program (U of I will provide loaners). Contact Wanda Quinn at wquinn@uidaho.edu.
  • LEGAL SERVICES
    • Legal services at reduced rates (40-59% based on income) avaliable for divorce, child custody, wills and estates, small claims under $5000, guardianships, adoptions, landlord/tenant (both), elder abuse, small buisness, and self-employed contracts and contract disputes. Contact non-profit law firm Attorneys Northwest at (208) 664-1139 or attorneysnw.com.
  • CHILDCARE AND SCHOOL
    • Kindergarten Preparedness with the READY! For Kindergarten program offers free workshops, learning targets, take-home activities, and tools to equip parents and caregivers to help toddlers and young children develop early literacy, math, and social-emotional skills for success in school. Three workshops per year are offered to parents/grandparents/caregivers of children 2-5 (before kindergarten) who will attend school in Coeur d'Alene, Post Falls, or Lakeland school district. Learn more at readyforkindergarten.org/unitedwaynorthidaho.
  • FINANCES
    • Bank On! is coming soon to North Idaho! Eight local financial institutions will be offering financial wellness classes. Completion of that class will lead to checking accounts and financial services for those who are unbanked or underbanked. Learn more at www.unitedwayofnorthidaho.org/bankon.

 

January 2018 Action Bulletin

  • LEGAL SERVICES
    • Legal services at reduced rates (40-59% based on income) available for divorce, child custody, wills and estates, small claims under $5000, guardianships, adoptions, landlord/tenant (both), elder abuse, small business and self=employed contracts and contract disputes. Contact non-profit law firm Attorneys Northwest at 208-664-1139 or attorneysnw.com.
  • JOB TRAINING
    • Apple/University of Idaho Mobile Application Development Training – UofI is seeking local employers to sponsor/scholarship employees or community members to receive badge and custom training in Swift Coding for mobile app development. Classes held at Harbor Center and Innovation Den, dates TBD. Contact Wanda Quinn at wquinn@uidaho.edu
    • CDA Vision 2030 and Department of Labor has a Soft Skills Training program available for the community. Your church could host or sponsor a training to help workers improve their employability and promotability. Contact Steve Wilson with the CDA Chamber of Commerce or Vicki Isakson at the Idaho Department of Labor for a list of local class locations. 
  • CHILDCARE/EARLY EDUCATION/FAMILIES
    • Early Head Start – ALICE population below 130% of Federal Poverty Line can free receive weekly home visits from a family consultant for help with parenting skills, early education and development, screenings and assessments and connection to community resources. Centers in CDA, Rathdrum, Sandpoint and Shoshone County provide playgroups, classes and seminars. Those who share housing could be automatically eligible. Apply online at msehs.org.
    • Free Seminar on Internet Safety “Your Losing Your Kids To Social Media” by Officer Gomez of the Meridian Police Department, Sunday February 11, Time: 6 -8 PM, Location : Real Life Ministries 1860 N Cecil Rd, Post Falls. Eye opening seminar focuses on how to keep your kids safe in environment of Dangerous Apps, Hidden Dangers, Cyber-Bullying, Sexting, Internet Predators, and Pornography. This seminar is recommended for kids age 10 and up. It is best attended as a family so you will have some discussion tools when you get home. For more information visit reallifeministries.com/internet-safety.
  • FINANCES
    • Six local financial institutions are participating in the Bank On program, providing starter and 2 nd chance accounts to ALICE population who have lost ‘bankability’ and are having to use payday service to cash checks (for a charge) or get a high-interest loan. Participants work with the institution of their choice to open account and take a financial education class.
      • Inland Northwest Bank (INB)
      • Mountain West Bank
      • Numerica Credit Union
      • P1FCU
      • Washington Trust Bank
      • Wells Fargo Bank
      • THANK YOU!!
    • Tax Services - 1 and 5 people who qualify for earned income tax credit and $2-3000 refund don’t apply for it. AARP Tax Aide is a program sponsored by the Internal Revenue Service and the AARP Foundation that assists low to moderate income taxpayers with the preparation and submittal of their income tax returns each year. This assistance is provided to the taxpayer at no cost. Volunteer counselors assist over 5000 of your neighbors with the preparation and submittal of their tax returns each year. You can be a part of the growing program, enjoy the camaraderie of your fellow volunteers and participate in the "fun" of providing assistance to our neighbors. Contact Warren Fisher at 1-208-765-6589 or warrenfisher@prodigy.net
  • HOUSING
    • Available rental properties currently are less than 1/2% of community inventory, with rents increasing and often requiring high application fees. This is forcing more in ALICE population to get trailers or live in unsafe housing and neighborhoods. Some are hearing reports of a possible predatory practice of receiving a rental application and assessing an application fee even if landlord/manager knows there are no available units. This is illegal. Report to Better Business Bureau Idaho at bbb.org/northwest.