Financial stability is one of the key pillars to United Way’s mission of advancing people from poverty to prosperity. United Way of the Mid-South works to put people in our community on a path toward financial empowerment by providing access to services, job training, credit counseling and money management programs. An idea that seems unattainable could be closer in reach than you think.

We have put together three helpful tips to get you closer to financial stability on this National Financial Awareness Day.

  1. Free Tax Prep by United Way – Last tax season, United Way offered Free Tax Prep for families whose household income was below $55,000. This program helped bring in over $14.4 million in tax returns last year by connecting moderate- to low-income families with certified tax preparers to ensure they received the largest return possible.
  2. Open up an active checking and savings account – Opening checking and savings accounts allows you to control your money with added security. Carrying around checks or a debit card is safer than carrying cash, and your funds–up to $250,000–are insured by the FDIC. You also get quicker access to your money when you utilize services like direct deposit. United Way of the Mid-South partners with Bank on Memphis, which provides second-chance bank accounts and financial education.
  3. Create and follow a budget – When you have a designated budget, you control your money and where it goes. Budgeting can help you stay focused on your long-term goals and prepare for the unexpected. It also gives you a clear path out of debt and more room to enjoy your life. United Way of the Mid-South partner, The RISE Foundation,  teaches participants how to create and live by a personalized budget.