MyBudgetCoach - Shantia

MyBudgetCoach™ helps Shantia's dreams become reality. When Shantia came to United Way to get her taxes done, she had no idea it would lead to a yearlong partnership with her own personal budget coach who would help her gain control of her finances. What's an effective way to empower someone like Shantia to build financial capability? It turns out, it may not be rocket science. It might be a person to talk to, learn from and trust.

This is the thrust of United Way's newest financial stability initiative, MyBudgetCoach™, a 12-month program pairing individuals looking for support in improving their financial situations with volunteers from the community - at no cost to the client!

Shantia meets with Chrisann, her budget coach, once per month to develop financial skills and to achieve freedom in her finances. Shantia said, “I feel more organized with my money. I have an idea where it’s going and where it’s coming from.”

When Shantia changed jobs this year and lost her health insurance, Chrisann helped her get the insurance she needed and consider other day-to-day expenses that allowed her to stay within her budget. Support in these situations made all the difference for Shantia. “In this program, you don’t do this by yourself. There are moments where you want to give up, but you learn to push past that.” Establishing a relationship with her budget coach helped Shantia develop lasting change.

Budgeting, like life, is full of surprises and occasional rainy days. Shantia faced a tough situation when the brakes on her car needed fixing. The repair was needed to keep her getting to and from work, but she was concerned about the cost. Chrisann was there to support Shantia the whole way. The MyBudgetCoach™  program had helped Shantia develop emergency savings each month, and the funds were there when needed. “I felt so much more confident going [to the shop] because I knew I had the money there [in my account].”

One of the biggest ways Shantia has grown is in her understanding of her spending. As a retail worker, Shantia saw the great savings and employee discounts readily available to her. MyBudgetCoach™  helped her realize how quickly these “savings” become high spending.

$25. That’s all Shantia is spending on clothes each month. It’s not easy. One month Shantia went over on her spending, but she didn’t want to disappoint herself or Chrisann. Shantia had the courage to return the extra purchase and stick to her budget.

She now knows how to spend in her budget and is equipped with the tools needed to create and maintain a budget.

MyBudgetCoach has helped Shantia prepare for the future through her sessions with Chrisann. Her financial freedom has given hope to her dreams. “I feel optimistic. I have a goal in place for every dream I have.”

Are you interested in becoming a member of the MyBudgetCoach™ program? Call Dee Shelton, at 330-491-9982 or visit our website » for more information.