Greetings!

For this year’s e-newsletters, we will be focusing on one of our four impact areas. This quarter, we are focusing on Financial Stability. The next quarters will be Health, Education and Immediate Needs in that order.

Our Community Investment Fund supports six financial stability programs from six different Community Impact Partners. These programs include Culinary Training at GRACE Marketplace through Alachua County Coalition for the Homeless and Hungry, Bridges to Prosperity through Catholic Charities, Financial Literacy & Economic Empowerment through Peaceful Paths Domestic Abuse Network, Transitional Housing through St. Francis House, Volunteer Transition through The Arc of Alachua County, and Legal Services through Three Rivers Legal Services.

Here are some stories on how your gift has impacted lives in our community.
GRACE Marketplace:
"One young man who started in our Culinary Training program at GRACE Marketplace had some culinary background but had been homeless for awhile. He had lost his confidence and self assurance. After being in the program for several weeks, he decided to apply for a job. Staff were very encouraging and helped him get ready for the interview. He was hired and volunteered in the kitchen to improve his skills. He has now been promoted to manager!"

Catholic Charities:
"We had a young woman call from work release in Alachua County. She was serving 10 months and was being released in three weeks. She told us that she had no family and no where to go when she got out. She was able to save $800 from her two jobs she was working, but the release program took 75 percent of her paycheck each week. 
She admitted making bad choices in the past but she wanted a new start and a chance to succeed. We met up several times to talk about her situation and helped her into homeless prevention. She is very hardworking with two jobs and she's determined to make her life better. Every time she visits, she thanks us for the help and trust we have given to her, and never leaves without a huge hug."

Three Rivers Legal Services:
"Jamie" is a working single mother who lives in a mobile home that she has financed and is paying for monthly. She also pays lot rent to a mobile home park. Recently, she lost the child support she was receiving. Even though she was working and getting promoted steadily, the loss of child support caused her to fall behind on lot rent. As a result, the park served her with a notice to vacate, but she had questions about the amounts requested. Instead of discussing the amounts with her, the mobile home park filed an eviction. We agreed to file an answer on her behalf, and represented her in court. We were able to get the eviction dismissed. Because the eviction was dismissed, she and her children still have a home."
If you would like to volunteer with any of our Community Impact Partner agencies, please contact Lauri Schiffbauer below:
It's that time of year again! Tax season is upon us and that means FREE tax preparation from our Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program for low- to moderate-income individuals and families.

To get your taxes filed for free, call 2-1-1 or dial (352) 332-4636 or click here to schedule your appointments at any of our sites!