Fred Showers is a Career Developer at Opportunity Inc of Hampton Roads (OppInc), one of six local workforce development areas participating in a unique and exciting randomized control study called The Virginia Financial Success Network (VFSN). Showers’ passion managing personal finances lends itself well to referring clients to the VFSN where they are eligible not only to receive job and training services but also free extensive financial literacy services from a personal coach.
Showers credits his parents with teaching him about money management and the importance of saving early in his life. He watched and learned from their example. To that end, he believes that financial education is important and should be introduced into the school systems, especially before a student graduates from high school.
In Showers’ daily conversations with clients at OppInc, he notices that their needs go far beyond just finding employment. Many times, the underlying cause of their situation is that they have no real training on financial basics.
“Being successful is more than just having a job. Your chances of being successful go way up when you learn how to control your finances and not have them control you. Participating in the VFSN is a way for someone to be in a certification program leading to employment while also gaining the necessary skills and the know how to have a lifelong plan for success,” says Showers.
Showers is diligent about making sure all of the clients he sees in the One-Stop Center are aware of the opportunity to participate in the VFSN. “As we help our clients develop a career through training and work skills, our desire is to see them employed so that they can make a living wage and have a successful career. The reality is that to be successful you need training, a budget, and a plan not for the just short-term but long-term as well,” Showers observed.
For more information on the VFSN, please contact Paula Dehetre, Grant Director, at 804-819-1687 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Editor’s Note: This article was written by Tuenika Wynn, Working Families Success Network (WFSN) Coordinator, Opportunity Inc. of Hampton Roads
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