$50,000 Kaiser Permanente Grant to Improve Financial Literacy: Big Island Now

September 5, 2022, 4:00 PM HST
* Updated September 7, 04:04

Permanent Kaiser

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the consumer price index rose 9.1% from a year ago. Financial stress can trigger feelings of shame, anger, and depression, affecting a person’s overall mental and physical health. To help Hawaiian families, Kaiser Permanente awarded a $50,000 grant to Goodwill Hawai’i aimed at improving financial literacy and corresponding health inequalities among low-income people.

The grant is part of a $2.5 million grant package that Kaiser Permanente has awarded to Change Machine, an organization that helps build financial security for people in low-income communities. Through the grant, Change Machine will provide its financial coaching platform and training to 190 social service organizations in eight states and the District of Columbia, including Goodwill Hawai’i, and aims to reach 100,000 people annually.

Goodwill Hawai’i will use the Change Machine platform to help individuals and families manage financial matters such as loans and debts, taxes, budgeting, savings and credit building. The program also helps build capacity to ensure the stability of financial coaching programs at Goodwill Hawai’i. Additionally, Goodwill Hawai’i will have access to tools that support collaboration between financial practitioners and community leaders.

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“Debt, bad credit and financial insecurity can affect your physical and mental health,” said Greg Christian, president of Hawaiian Market, Kaiser Foundation Health Plan and Hospitals. “This grant will provide Hawaii residents with access to tools and services to improve financial literacy and help reduce economic and health disparities in our community.”

Geraldine L. Melton