February 01, 2005

Crapo, Mayors, Small Business Administration & Hispanic Leaders Team Up To Increase Business Training And Jobs

Twenty-six counselors will provide financial, home buying help to Hispanic community

Washington, DC â?? Idaho Senator Mike Crapo, the Hispanic Financial Education Coalition (HFEC), and local bank and credit union leaders have announced the certification of twenty-five new financial trainers. The trainers, comprised of volunteers from the banking, lending, and realty industries, will work in their communities to increase financial education in the Hispanic population. Specifically, the trainers will hold classes focusing on the U.S. Banking system, budgeting, saving, using and building credit, and the qualifications for home ownership. The announcement brings the total number of trainers to twenty-six, a significant increase from the one trainer that has been working on behalf of the HFEC. â??This is a very significant event for the HFEC and the Hispanic community,â?? Crapo said. â??Going from one to twenty-six trainers will have a significant impact in helping individuals set and achieve financial goals, including the dream of homeownership. Studies show that minorities continue to face barriers to homeownership such as lack of capital for a down payment, lack of access to credit and poor credit histories, lack of understanding and information about the home buying process, and illegal housing discrimination. So far over 515 people have taken the financial literacy classes, and several have become homeowners. All Idahoans will benefit from the work of this coalition. As individuals make the transition to home ownership, our communities are strengthened and stabilized. These efforts are an excellent tool to assist Hispanic families and other minorities so they can utilize the banking system to their advantage.â?? Crapo and the coalition partners established the outreach effort two years ago amidst reports that minority home ownership rates in Idaho were below those of other Idahoans. HFEC programs seek to help minority populations build wealth through understanding the U.S. banking system and establish savings and checking accounts that can provide financial records leading to home ownership. The founding members of the Idaho HFEC are Crapo, a member of the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee; Fannie Mae, the Idaho Credit Union League, Idaho Migrant Council, Idaho Housing and Finance Association, Idaho Bankers Association, Hispanic Real Estate Professionals of Idaho, USDA Rural Development, Idaho Commission on Hispanic Affairs, Commission on Hispanic Affairs, Hispanic Business Association, and U.S. Housing and Urban Development. Terrie Olvera coordinates the classes through the Idaho Migrant Council and the Idaho Credit Union League. â??Through efforts such as these, we can make home ownership and other financial goals a reality for many families who once thought it out of reach,â?? Crapo added. â??Achieving the goal of home ownership promotes self-reliance, pride, and security on the part of families, and reflects principles of individual freedom on which our country was founded. I commend and thank all of the volunteers for their hard work and recognize the many businesses and organizations that have made financial contributions to this effort.â?? # # #