For many people the concept of financial literacy and financial empowerment can be a touchy one. Money is something that everyone needs to acquire in order to survive but in many ways money is about much more than dollar signs.
People have a relationship to the pieces of metal and paper that we use to buy things and oftentimes that relationship is fraught with misinformation or deep emotions.
Some people can find themselves using money as a kind of emotional crutch as they go on shopping sprees that might strain their budgets in order to seek the satisfying feeling many people get when they buy something that they are fond of.
Others might find that their relationship to money is laced with fear: the fear of never having enough of it to buy everything that one needs or the fear of looking up one’s credit score after making some ill-advised financial decisions.
Whatever someone’s relationship to money is most people who earn money will find themselves needing to interact with an institution that serves as the backbone of the financial ecosystem: a bank.
Banks have existed for sometime now and have long been used to store money and complete other financial transactions. For individuals that live in the industrialized world there can often be many choices available to them to meet their banking needs.
While this is not necessarily true for all cross sections of society many people throughout the industrialized world have access to institutions that can offer them credit, give them access to crucial resources such as a home loan, a car loan or a credit card and offer their expertise and guidance on important decisions that will define a customer’s financial life. Learn more about Jim Larkin and Michael Lacey: http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/politics/immigration/2014/12/16/proceeds-arpaio-suit-fund-asu-journalism-chair/20480479/
For many people who are living in poverty across the developed world these standard services simply are not available to them. What many people who are dealing with poverty need are financial institutions and products that are designed to suit their specific needs. This is where a humanitarian organization like CARE comes in.
CARE is a global international development organization that was launched in the 1940s as a collaborative effort between US-based entities to deliver care packages to victims of World War II. World War II devastated much of Europe and left the civilians that had survived the conflict without food. Read more: Village Voice Media | Wikipedia
The organization that would become CARE began as an effort to ship packages of army food that was meant for US soldiers to people who had suddenly become incredibly food insecure due to the ongoing conflict. The project allowed people in the United States to participate in an effort that would impact vulnerable people overseas in a positive way.
Today organizations like The Larkin and Lacey Frontera Fund operate in the spirit of the effort that started CARE. The fund is an organization that is based in Arizona and that exists to provide support to civil society organizations. The fund was launched by Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin and uses its resources to fund organizations that work to serve Latino communities.