The mission of the project is to provide individuals with an effective alternative to high interest predatory loans and to create a community where individuals are provided with financial mentorship and consumer protection information by members of St. Vincent de Paul and others who have lived experience struggling with access to financial services.
Provide Low-Interest Loans
Loans will be provided for one-time expenses to individuals who can demonstrate that they have the ability to pay back the loan. We want individuals to succeed – so we will not be providing low-income loans for expenses such as rent, food, or utilities. We will provide loans for expenses such as a car repair, a home repair, or fees to take a class. When individuals are provided with a loan – they will also be provided with their own credit union account. They can also use this account for direct deposit of paychecks and to cash checks for free.
Individuals who need help with food, rent, or utilities will be referred to a Saint Vincent de Paul conference for emergency assistance.
Provide Community Support
We want individuals to be successful in repaying their loans. We also want to provide other resources an individual may need. Individuals that request loans will be provided with assistance in determining a reasonable budget to pay back the loan.
Additionally, individuals will work with a mentor. This mentor will provide information on finances, as well as consumer protection information, such as how to avoid financial scams and connect to other community resources, such as free tax preparation to avoid high-interest refund anticipation loans.
If the individual encounters a barrier to loan repayment – the mentor will work them to find a solution to the issue.
If you are interested in more information about microloan eligibility, please contact your local St. Vincent de Paul Conference in the Columbus Diocese, in Licking County only. Beginning this fall (2017) and winter (2018), the Microloan Program will be available in in four additional counties. Partnerships have been developed in Delaware, Fairfield, Franklin and Ross Counties.