(Black Press Media file)

(Black Press Media file)

Okanagan financial literacy group launches program to help low-income residents

Launch Okanagan is looking for 100 new donors to help with the program

An Okanagan literacy group has kicked off a fundraising campaign aimed at helping low-income individuals in the community.

Launch Okanagan introduced the Launch a Life campaign, a financial education program that will teach participants how to effectively manage personal finances while providing them with the chance to save money for a goal.

The group is now looking for 100 donors to help them launch a life within the community.

“I helped to start the Matched Savings Program over 10 years ago to not only equip lower-income individuals in our community with vital financial management skills, but also give them opportunities to reach their personal goals through incentivized savings,” Launch Okanagan co-founder Michael Wendland said.

During the program, participants receive monthly financial training sessions over 12 months, where they save $25 to $50 a month to be able to buy an approved asset. When participants graduate from the program, Launch Okanagan matches their savings: for every dollar a participant saves, Launch will contribute $3 for a maximum of $1,800 towards continuing education, tools for a trade or even RESPs.

Wendland said demand for the program has increased recently.

“Program demand has increased substantially over the last year, so we need individual and corporate sponsors more than ever to keep launching lives and impacting the vulnerable in our community,” he said.

Launch Okanagan executive director Jennifer Robins said she’s seen the positive impact of the program and is hoping people feel encouraged to join in and help the vulnerable in the community.

“Our goal is 100 new sponsors supporting our Matched Savings Program. We know this is a big goal, but we also know this is a generous community,” she said.

“We all win when everyone has an opportunity to be successful.”

More information on Launch a Life is available here.

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