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NFCC Welcomes New Members

By Guest Blogger | Monday April 20th, 2015

McClearyBy Bruce McClary

The NFCC proudly announces the addition of two new members. NeighborWorks Umpqua and Take Charge America who joined the NFCC during the first quarter of the year, bringing the total membership to 77 agencies with nearly 600 community-based locations across America.

“We are pleased to welcome NeighborWorks Umpqua and Take Charge America as the newest members of the NFCC,” said Susan C. Keating, president and CEO of the NFCC. “Both organizations have demonstrated a deep commitment to financial education while sharing many of the same values commonly associated with NFCC members. As debt and lack of savings create increasing pressure on many Americans, we will work together to create a stable financial future for those currently struggling to reach their goals.”

Take Charge America is a recognized leader in the field of nonprofit financial counseling and education. They have served over a million and a half people, helping individuals and families overcome challenges in order to achieve financial stability and independence. They provide a wide range of services that include financial education, debt management, housing counseling, and student loan counseling.

“For nearly 30 years, Take Charge America has provided our clients and the public at large with much-needed financial education to help them overcome life’s challenges,” explains Take Charge America president and CEO David Richardson. “Our commitment to high ethical standards and quality practices is echoed throughout the NFCC membership, and we are proud to become a member and further assist in advancing the credit counseling profession.”

NeighborWorks Umpqua serves Oregon residents of Coos, Curry, Douglas and Josephine County. While they carry out their mission by working for and with low-income residents to help them secure and maintain affordable housing, they also support community-based economic development opportunities to help the region reach its full potential. NeighborWorks Umpqua has developed 490 units of affordable housing, and helped over 400 homeowners rehab their homes. In 2014, they counseled 500 homeowners to help them preserve home ownership.

“Becoming a member of the NFCC rounds out the services our agency can provide to clients,” said NeighborWorks Umpqua president and CEO Betty Tamm. “Offering consumer credit counseling along with other programs like homebuyer education, small business development, or our housing rehab allows us to become more of a full service agency.”

As new members, these agencies will obtain and maintain accreditation by the Council on Accreditation, Inc. (COA). COA is an independent third-party not-for-profit accrediting organization that has reviewed more than 1,500 social service programs to ensure compliance with rigorous best-practice standards. All NFCC member agencies must be re-accredited by COA every four years. The NFCC is also recognized within the sector, and by creditors, for its trademarked Counselor Certification Program. All NFCC certified counselors must be employed by an agency of the NFCC member network, and must complete the NFCC’s comprehensive training program to guarantee their ability to provide quality education and assistance to consumers.

About NeighborWorks Umpqua

NeighborWorks Umpqua is a private, rural nonprofit organization working to increase access to affordable housing while creating partnerships that promote community stability, business success, and economic growth for Southwest Oregon residents. NeighborWorks Umpqua works to connect the community with programs, resources, and services that help them improve their lives and enhance local communities. To learn more, or to speak with a counselor, call (877) 291-5477 or visit http://www.nwumpqua.org.

About Take Charge America, Inc.

Founded in 1987, Take Charge America, Inc. is a nonprofit agency offering financial education and counseling services including credit counseling, debt management, student loan counseling, housing counseling and bankruptcy counseling. It has helped more than 1.6 million consumers nationwide manage their personal finances and debts. To learn more, visit http://www.takechargeamerica.org or call (888) 822-9193.

Bruce McClary is Vice President of Public Relations & External Affairs with the National Foundation for Credit Counseling.

Views expressed are the personal views of the author, and do not represent the views of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, its employees, its members, or its clients.

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