Financial Wellness Partnership Update
June 2021
United Way of Tucson and Southern Arizona circulates this monthly newsletter focused on financial wellness topics. In this edition, learn the latest about our focus teams, the Child Tax Credit, financial coaching best practices, and more.
Next Financial Wellness Partnership Meeting
Thursday, June 24, 1-2:30pm

Our next meeting will include a presentation from Goodwill of Southern Arizona about their workforce development programs. We will also provide updates about our focus teams and ongoing projects, and set aside time for breakout rooms about action items. Email Lisa Floran ( for more information.
Updates and Research
Focus Team Notes
Two Financial Wellness Partnership (FWP) focus teams started meeting last month. The first, the Collaborative Referrals team, will hone in on helping people receive services from multiple organizations. In a FWP meeting earlier this year, a poll showed that most participants in local programs need at least four different services or supports, and few organizations are able to meet these needs alone. However, moving to a new organization can bring obstacles, and many people don't follow through on services with other providers. The Collaborative Referrals team will work on strategies that make referrals and using services from multiple organizations easier. At the first meeting, members envisioned a system that includes strong program awareness among nonprofit staff, shared goals and consistent intake processes, solid communication, and clear feedback loops.

The second group, the Public Policy team, will explore how we can impact larger conversations related to financial wellness. In their first meeting, they discussed how to define financial wellness and why a strong definition is needed. Forming a central understanding of financial wellness is critical to helping policymakers and the general public understand the trajectory, barriers, and mindsets of families working their way out of crisis situations and vulnerability.
All are welcome to participate in focus team work groups. To receive the Zoom invitations and/or notes from past meetings, email Lisa Floran, Senior Director of Financial Wellness Initiatives:
Advanced Child Tax Credit: What to Know
The Child Tax Credit has changed for the 2021 tax year. Taxpayers should expect to receive a total of $3,000 total per child ages 6-17 and $3,600 total per child under 6 years old for each child they intend to claim on their 2021 tax return. Half of this credit will be paid out early as monthly payments of $250-$300, starting in mid-July 2021.


  • Income Requirements: $75,000 for a single filer / $112,500 for head of household / $150,000 for married filer. (If your household income is higher, you may still receive some payments.)
  • Social Security Number: Children must have a social security number to be eligible. Parents and guardians do not need a SSN to receive payment and can file with a ITIN.

If you filed your 2020 taxes, the IRS will use that information to understand how many children you have, your income, and banking information for where to send payments. Monthly payments will be distributed in the same way that you received any 2020 tax refunds (ex. direct deposit, IRS debit card). If you did not file your 2020 taxes, the IRS will use information from your 2019 taxes. 
Get the Credit

Eligible families are encouraged to file 2020 taxes as soon as possible to ensure the IRS has the most up-to-date information. Free tax assistance is available right now, even past the filing deadline:

  • Pio Decimo Center – Call 520-416-4754 to check availability for an appointment with tax-certified volunteers.
  • – Upload required tax documents through a secure portal and work with tax-certified volunteers online.

The IRS is also adding resources to its Advanced Child Tax Credit page, including a Nonfilers Tool for people who generally do not file taxes. A portal for updating information about your family is also coming soon.
Additional information, including links to flyers, social media tools, IRS updates and portals, fact sheets, and other tax FAQs: United Way Tucson VITA
Research: Financial Coaching Initiative
In 2015, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) launched the Financial Coaching Initiative, a pilot program that provided financial coaching services to veterans and economically vulnerable consumers. Professional coaches were embedded into 60 host sites across the country, where they provided free, one-on-one help to consumers to address their personal financial goals and served over 23,000 people.

CFPB released a summary report, Financial Coaching Initiative: Results and Lessons Learned, in May. Among their key findings:

  • Financial Coaching is flexible enough to work successfully in a wide-range of settings and populations
  • Outreach and marketing were needed to reach beyond an organization's current participants, which only accounted for about 50% of enrollees
  • Clients preferred an in-person first meeting but could successfully use other communication methods and platforms for subsequent meetings
  • Working with a coach more than once showed better outcomes, but one-time meetings were still impactful for some people
Learn more about the initiative or read the full report - Financial Coaching Initiative: Results and Lessons Learned
Resource: Child Care Benefits and New Scholarships
Since the start of the pandemic, 2.8 million women have dropped out of the workforce – four times the rate of men leaving. Many analysts attribute these exits to difficulty finding child care, at least in part. Efforts are underway to expand accessibility of existing child care resources, such as DES subsidies and Quality First supports. Additionally, local partners recently announced the following new opportunities for families:

  • Child Care for Returning Workers – DES is providing three months of child care assistance for qualifying parents and guardians with children who are returning to work after receiving unemployment benefits. Caretakers making $25/hr or less at their new job are likely eligible.
  • Pima Early Education Program scholarships (PEEPs) - Pima County and its partners created and funded the Pima Early Education Program to help eligible families pay for high-quality preschool at 170 locations across the county. Most of our partnering preschools will begin offering these free or reduced-cost educational opportunities starting in July 2021.
Child Care Resource & Referral’s (CCR&R) Child Care Information Line is a central resource for families and case managers interested in exploring child care options and different forms of financial assistance. Call CCR&R at 1-800-308-9000, or use their website to conduct an online search: Child Care Resource & Referral
Resource Corner
Woman peeks over a book in a library surrounded by books
Reading List
Resources and Opportunities

Grant Opportunity: The South32 Hermosa Community Fund - Community Foundation of Southern AZ support for nonprofits in Santa Cruz County; deadline 6/30

Put Cash in your pocket with Benefits For Working Families - Strong Families AZ, 6/24 1-2:30pm

Briefing on Affordable Homeownership and Infrastructure - National Housing Conference, 6/28 11-12pm

Reimagining Systems-Level Changes for Economic Equity - Asset Funders Network, 7/29, 10-11am
Additional Information

What Tenants Need to Know During COVID-19 – Robust list including rental assistance, eviction protection/moratorium, and legal assistance resources compiled by Pima County

Eviction Prevention Resources - The Tucson Pima EPP portal for rental and utility assistance is still open, working with a network of 10 nonprofits to distribute relief funds from the City of Tucson and Pima County. Tenants are encouraged to sign up for the waitlist in order to be considered.

2-1-1 Eviction Assistance App - Answer a series of questions in approximately two minutes and receive detailed, individual, step-by-step guidance to about housing assistance and resources

AZ Eviction Help - Information about eviction processes, tenant rights, and resources for rental assistance, utility assistance, legal assistance compiled by the Arizona Bar Association

AHCCCS Vaccine Navigators - The Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS), in partnership with Crisis Response Network, announces a new COVID-19 appointment and transportation navigation program for Medicaid members. Now, Medicaid members who need assistance scheduling a COVID-19 vaccine appointment, as well as transportation to and from that appointment, can call 1-844-542-8201, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., seven days a week.

Vaccine Ambassadorship Toolkit: This toolkit from TPCH provides advocate resources related to accurate vaccine education and trauma-informed discussions about the vaccines with people experiencing homelessness.

AZDHS COVID-19 Website – Latest updates, closure and re-opening announcements, and data dashboard

Who is Your Person? Resources from National Healthcare Decisions Day - National Healthcare Decisions Day is a day designed to help raise public awareness of the need to plan ahead for end-of-life healthcare decisions. The AZ End of Life Care Partnership is offering workshops with community partners all week – find a schedule and materials on their website.

Tax Resources - UWTSA webpage also includes information to FAQs and recent changes to IRS tax law and policy
The Financial Wellness Partnership seeks to improve the financial wellness of individuals and families by increasing accessibility to effective services, resources, and opportunities, and by influencing policy to
develop equitable, people-centered systems that support financial wellness.

View past newsletters and learn more about our programs here: United Way Financial Wellness

If you have questions or suggestions for future newsletters, please contact Lisa Floran, Senior Director of Financial Wellness Initiatives at United Way of Tucson and Southern Arizona: