SER Center for Working Families
Since 2008, SER Metro-Detroit’s Center for Working Families (CWF) has grown to become a point of reference in the community and beyond. CWF acts an umbrella program that provides wraparound services that help working families get ahead by improving their financial position on a long-term basis. The goal is to support City of Detroit residents reach financial stability, self-sufficiency, and to advance economically. The program “bundles” three core services, Income Supports, Financial Coaching, and Employment Coaching.
CWF is one of the most popular programs at SER Metro-Detroit. This program is open to individuals and families looking to improve their overall financial position and has proven to be extremely beneficial to the community.
As a program, our clients have been able to reach several achievements such as an increase in net worth, dramatic decreases in debt, and build, establish or increase their credit scores. Collectively, we’ve had an increased number of homeowners and a decline in foreclosures. We continue to work hard for our community, for a stronger Detroit; and we are getting there, one step at the time.
CWF provides participants with one-on-one coaching, job readiness, assist with job placement, soft skills training, and career advancement (education and training, professional development workshops). Additionally, CWF may refer participants to off-site education and job training opportunities. Such as Vocational English as a Second Language (VESL), Basic Computer Training, GED, Bridges to Career Opportunities Program, Access for All, and access to STEM Careers.
The financial literacy/asset building component includes educational workshops, one-on-one coaching and a menu of affordable financial services products.
Providing one-on-one financial coaching includes credit building, credit repair, budgeting, saving, banking and a menu of financial products while developing long-term financial goals. Our financial coaches partner with financial institutions, non-profits organizations, and other agencies to connect clients with better financial resources. Financial coaching is built on a long-term relationship between a client and financial coach. The process focuses on changing negative financial behaviors and establishing new positive behaviors over time through education and building the literacy component. It provides an opportunity for the client to set and achieve his or her personal financial goals.
CWF provides Detroit residents with access to community resources and public benefits. Individuals/families receive assistance from the CWF Income Supports Specialist who will screen them for public benefits, utility assistance, 0% Home Repair Loan, referrals to the Accounting Aid Society, and much more.
SER highly encourages participants to meet with a financial coach a minimum of two times annually. Additionally, clients have a one-on-one meeting with an income supports specialist and employment specialist. CWF staff works with participants to develop realistic budgets, goals, learn healthy spending habits, prepare for job interviews and are shown benefits and resources available for bridging their financial gaps.