United Way NCA Celebrates Grand Opening of Financial Empowerment Center in Montgomery County That Offers Free Financial Services to County Residents

Mar 01, 2022

fec at Montgomery county logo

Made Possible by M&T Bank’s Investment of $450,000 and Partnerships with CAFE Montgomery and WorkSource Montgomery

WHEATON, MD (March 1, 2022) – United Way of the National Capital Area (United Way NCA), along with its partners M&T Bank, Coalition for the Advancement of Financial Education (CAFE) Montgomery and WorkSource Montgomery, hosted a grand opening celebration for the United Way NCA Financial Empowerment Center (FEC) at Montgomery County in Wheaton, MD.

This marks United Way NCA’s fifth Financial Empowerment Center in the Washington region.

fec opening in montgomery county
United Way of the National Capital Area along with its partners M&T Bank, Coalition for the Advancement of Financial Education (CAFE) Montgomery and WorkSource Montgomery cut the ribbon on the Financial Empowerment Center in Montgomery County. (left to right) Anthony Featherstone, WorkSource Montgomery Executive Director; Ronald Jennings, Sr., CAFE Montgomery Executive Director; Will Jawando, Montgomery County Councilmember; Cecilia Hodges, M&T Bank Regional President, Greater Washington & Virginia; Rosie Allen-Herring, United Way NCA President & CEO; Gary Tabach, United Way NCA Board of Directors Chairman; and Ian Gordon, United Way NCA Vice President Community Impact & Engagement.

“United Way NCA’s goal for the Financial Empowerment Centers is to help area residents succeed over academic, social and economic barriers through a two-generational approach focused on children and families,” said Rosie Allen-Herring, President and CEO, United Way NCA. “We work with clients on financial training and workforce development to ultimately graduate them to business and home ownership and financial success. These centers help lift up individuals and put them on a path toward economic opportunity by offering access to high-quality financial services and guidance in a welcoming, professional environment at no cost.”

“The opening of a Financial Empowerment Center in Montgomery County is exciting. The work here will help confront the racial and economic disparities that make building wealth difficult. With financial literacy and other training, this center will improve the lives of every person who walks through these doors by giving them the tools they need to succeed. This is not only good for individuals but also good for our entire community,” said Will Jawando, Montgomery County Councilmember.

M&T Bank initially invested $300,000 to the development of the Financial Empowerment Center, which provides financial literacy education and other financial resources to the center’s visitors. In addition to the support from M&T Bank, United Way NCA’s Financial Empowerment Center at Montgomery County is made possible in partnership with CAFE Montgomery and WorkSource Montgomery.

“We look forward to partnering with United Way of the National Capital Area to help improve the financial education and stability of Montgomery County’s residents,” said Cecilia Hodges, M&T’s regional president for Greater Washington and Virginia. “By expanding the availability and coordination of these services, the center’s visitors will gain confidence in how to improve credit, decrease debt and increase savings.”

As part of the ribbon-cutting event, M&T also announced an additional $150,000 charitable contribution to United Way of the National Capital Area’s operating expenses for 2022.

M&T presented an additional $150,000 charitable contribution to United Way of the National Capital Area’s operating expenses for 2022. (left to right) Ian Gordon, United Way NCA Vice President Community Impact & Engagement, Will Jawando, Montgomery County Councilmember; Cecilia Hodges, M&T Bank Regional President, Greater Washington & Virginia; Rosie Allen-Herring, United Way NCA President & CEO; and Gary Tabach, United Way NCA Board of Directors Chairman.

“Financial security and economic mobility depend not just on one’s job, income, and skills, but increasingly on financial education and developing healthy financial habits,” said Ronald Jennings, Executive Director, CAFE Montgomery. “This new FEC will provide more opportunities for Montgomery County residents to gain financial skills and resources to better secure their families’ futures.”

This new location and Financial Empowerment Centers in Washington DC, Prince George’s County, MD, South County in Alexandria, VA and Prince William’s County, VA provide financial counseling and coaching to help residents stretch their dollars during furloughs, layoffs, or reductions in income. Each FEC brings together the most effective partners to help clients grow income, build assets, manage debt, and improve credit—a much-needed resource for a community with many residents facing substantial economic challenges. In addition, the FECs have embedded workforce services to connect clients with jobs and skills training and set them on a path to home ownership. Services include one-on-one personal and small business financial coaching, workshops, tax preparation by IRS qualified volunteers, virtual libraries and more.

“WorkSource Montgomery and our Local Workforce Development Board are extremely excited about this partnership and the FEC’s positive impact for Montgomery County job seekers,” said Anthony Featherstone, Executive Director, WorkSource Montgomery. “We know these types of cohesive partnerships are essential for our American Job Center Network as we continuously work to help improve the lives of those we serve.”

For more information about United Way NCA’s FECs, please visit unitedwaynca.org/financial-empowerment-center/.

About United Way of the National Capital Area

United Way of the National Capital Area works to improve the health, education and economic opportunity of every person in the National Capital community. United Way NCA has been improving lives by creating measurable impact in the District of Columbia, Northern Virginia, and Montgomery and Prince George’s Counties for more than 45 years. In 2020, United Way NCA was among 384 organizations across the United States to receive a generous transformational investment from novelist and venture philanthropist, MacKenzie Scott. For more information about United Way of the National Capital Area, visit UnitedWayNCA.org.

About M&T Bank
M&T Bank Corporation is a financial holding company headquartered in Buffalo, New York. M&T’s principal banking subsidiary, M&T Bank, operates banking offices in New York, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Connecticut, Virginia, West Virginia and the District of Columbia. Trust-related services are provided by M&T’s Wilmington Trust-affiliated companies and by M&T Bank.

© 2022 M&T Bank. Member FDIC.

About CAFE Montgomery

The Coalition for the Advancement of Financial Education’s purpose is to promote and deliver high quality financial education to Montgomery County residents of all ages, communities and ethnic groups. Our goal is to provide the necessary tools for making informed decisions about saving, spending, borrowing and managing credit.

About WorkSource Montgomery

WSM is the lead Workforce Development organization in Montgomery County. The organization operates the American Job Centers in Wheaton and Germantown, along with several satellite sites, and provides comprehensive workforce development services to Montgomery County residents and businesses. Programs and initiatives offered by WSM are supported by federal, state, and county funding. For more information about WorkSource Montgomery and current recruitment opportunities, events, and workshops, visit worksourcemontgomery.com.