MILWAUKEE - For many a car is a luxury. Getting to work means public transportation. But one local program at the YWCA is helping people get their own vehicles. It's called "Ways to Work."
It helps people with less than stellar credit get car loans. Program Manager Shelby Borchardt explains, "Ways to work is an economic empowerment program. It combines low interest auto loans with financial education and budget consulting. It's for credit challenged individuals who are working."
Borchardt says it's rewarding to get people out of the cycle of poverty.
Clients also are able to avoid the high interest rates that people with bad credit must pay. Jennifer deMontmollin, Chief Program Officer explains, "Predatory lending is such a big problem in our community that many don't realize that if you have a challenged credit score." She says, "It's not uncommon to see interest rates on car loans twenty to thirty percent."
Ways to work gives clients a chance to boost their credit score when they payback their loan. Jennifer deMontmollin says it's about making neighborhoods stronger. "We're talking about building financial competency and capacity and taking the fear out of financial matters. It's a powerful program."