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ALEXANDRIA, Va.-NCUA Chairman JoAnn Johnson encouraged credit unions serving low-income communities to attend upcoming Department of Health and Human Services’ Assets For Independence training sessions. “The HHS Assets for Independence (AFI) grant program is an excellent way that low-income credit union members can begin to achieve sound financial footing, and I encourage credit unions to attend a training session to learn more,” Johnson said. “The program enables credit unions to assist members [in growing] their savings and turn dreams into reality though the combination of member savings in Individual Development Accounts (IDAs) and matching AFI contributions.” Deposits by low-income members in IDAs are matched with AFI funds ranging from $1 to $8 per $1. In six months or more, members typically accumulate more than $4,000 for a home purchase, small business or pay for education and training. “Providing members access to a savings program that can make a difference in their lives is the payoff for participating credit unions,” Johnson said. “The program is designed to enhance the social and economic well-being of families and communities across America.” Informational sessions are held concurrently with the training academies, which include: * Aug. 16 in Oakland, Calif. (training Aug. 15-17) * Aug. 23 in Baltimore (training Aug. 22-24) * Aug. 30 in Chicago (training Aug 29-31) Further information is available at www.acf.hhs.gov/assetbuilding.

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