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Albuquerque Launches Free Financial Navigator Service to Help Residents Tackle COVID-19 Financial Challenges

Community partnership to provide personal Navigators

Albuquerque – Mayor Tim Keller, the City of Albuquerque, and three non-profit partners are launching a free Financial Navigators program to help Albuquerque residents navigate the impact of COVID-19 on family budgets and pocketbooks. The new program is a partnership with national nonprofit organization the Cities for FinancialEmpowerment Fund (CFE Fund), and local organizations NM Dream Team and the New Mexico Coalition to End Homelessness.

Financial Navigators are available now to meet with residents by phone, providing resources to manage income disruptions and other financial concerns. FinancialNavigators help residents one-on-one to prioritize personal financial issues, identify immediate action steps to manage expenses and maximize income, and make referrals to services provided by state and local government and more than 100 community-based providers and partners.

“COVID-19 has done real damage to families who saw income disappear or were forced to choose between their safety and their pocketbooks. There’s no one-size-fits-all solution, so we’re providing personal Navigators to help find the right resources for each individual situation and get folks in touch with the services they need,” said Mayor Tim Keller. 

NM Dream Team is providing the staff for the navigator program and has both English and Spanish-speaking Navigators available. All languages can be served via telephonic interpretation. The New Mexico Coalition to End Homelessness will focus on helping the thousands of city residents on the brink of losing their housing as a result of the crisis.

Eduardo Esquivel, New Mexico Dream Team Co-Executive Director, said, ”NM Dream Team is excited to collaborate with the City of Albuquerque and the Center for Financial Empowerment to provide financial guidance and supports to City residents in response to the economic impact of COVID-19.  Improving the financial stability of the most vulnerable Burqueños, left behind or overlooked by other programs and suffering money problems because of the pandemic, is essential to our city’s recovery."

Residents can access these remote services by completing the web form at http://www.cabq.gov/finnav or calling 311 to sign up. The Financial Navigator will then send a short service agreement and call the client to begin their personal session. The program will be supported by an outreach campaign that will include billboards, online ads, social media, and television and radio spots to promote participation.  

The CFE Fund provided grant funding along with significant technical assistance and training to launch the program in Albuquerque and other cities and counties across the nation. This initiative is supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Citi Foundation, JPMorgan Chase & Co., and the Wells Fargo Foundation.


Financial distress is a primary part of the COVID-19 crisis, and were pleased Mayor Keller is making this a priority for Albuquerque residents,” said Jonathan Mintz, President and CEO of the Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund. The Financial Navigators program will help Albuquerque residents assess and prioritize their financial concerns and get connected with the right resources.”

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About the Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund (CFE Fund)

 

The CFE Fund supports municipal efforts to improve the financial stability of households by leveraging opportunities unique to local government. By translating cutting edge experience with large scale programs, research, and policy in cities of all sizes, the CFE Fund assists mayors and other local leaders to identify, develop, fund, implement, and research pilots and programs that help families build assets and make the most of their financial resources. The CFE Fund is currently working in over 100 cities, and has disbursed over $42 million to city governments and their partners to support these efforts. For more information, please visit www.cfefund.org or follow us on Twitter at @CFEFund