Banks pitch-in to help car ownership program
Demonstrated rates of success, passionate staff and hardworking clients have helped propel a local program onto the national stage.
Family Services’ Ways to Work program has reached unprecedented levels of success in the past few years. Ways to Work provides loans, ranging from $500 to $6,000, to help qualifying families purchase a used car or pay for car repairs up to $1,000.
Ninety percent of the loans are given to single working mothers with children who are at Federal poverty levels. Borrowers repay the loan at a modest interest rate, for a term of 12-36 months, depending on the loan amount.
Ways to Work was recently awarded $21,500 in grants from Wells Fargo Bank, BB&T, Bank of America and NewBridge Bank. The funds will be used for operational support.
In the past year, Ways to Work closed on 80 loans for families, up from 79 loans in 2011, which was a 92 percent increase in the number of loans over 2010. The program hit the $1 million mark in funded loans and the local program also won the highest award, the First Place Premier Award, from the national Ways to Work, Inc. office as part of their 2012 Wal-Mart Performance Awards.
For many participants in the Ways to Work program, owning a reliable car means the difference between getting and keeping a good job, getting to the grocery store, getting their child to the doctor or dentist, or having their child involved in extracurricular activities.
“We are thankful to have support for Ways to Work from leaders in the banking industry. The funds they have allocated will help us provide our clients with safe, reliable transportation for their families,” said Bob Feikema, president and CEO of Family Services, Inc.