Australia’s only specialist banking service for not-for-profit organisations has joined forces with a local not-for-profit employment and training provider to help the region’s most vulnerable people get financial loans and advice to get their lives back on track.
Federal Member for Cunningham, Sharon Bird, said today that the Commonwealth Government has provided $2.3 million in funding support to Community Sector Banking (CSB), which is partnering with Access Community Group, to deliver a Financial Management Program in the Illawarra.
“I am really delighted that two of Corrimal’s quiet achieving not-for-profit organisations are joining forces to help ensure that financially vulnerable and disadvantaged people can take advantage of a hand up to get their lives back on track.
“The Financial Management Program aims to improve the financial knowledge and resilience of vulnerable people and families living in our local community.
“CSB is a national organisation with its head office based in Corrimal since 2002, and Access Community Group has been based locally since 1986”, Ms Bird said.
CSB Executive Director, Peter Quarmby, said “CSB is proud to be able to offer this important program to the Illawarra region through our shareholder Access Community Group with its long track record of delivering essential services in this area.
“CSB is delighted to be part of a program which aims to bring an end to the financial exclusion of so many people who are trying to get back on their feet.
“Many disadvantaged people have little chance of ever getting a loan and so they never develop the financial skills that we all need to secure life in our society.
“Hundreds of thousands of Australians face some form of social exclusion as a result of everything from problem gambling, alcoholism or simply having a poor credit history.
“Through this program we will assist our seven partner organisations located across Australia to offer fair, affordable and appropriate financial products and services to disadvantaged people”, Mr Quarmby said.
Ms Bird said that the Commonwealth Government has committed $6.3 million nationally under the Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) pilot initiative.