UPNEXT: A Second Chance at Life and Fatherhood

The Center for Court Innovation recently profiled Harry, a proud father and alumnus of UPNEXT, a fatherhood engagement and workforce readiness program of the Midtown Community Court. Neighborhood Trust Financial Counselors have been part of the UPNEXT program for eight years, helping fathers like Harry solve their child support arrears and other financial obstacles to fatherhood.

In the words of Financial Counselor Michelle Morillo on the Midtown Community Court blog last year, “Their work with me gives them a strong foundation to rebuild trust in the financial system and accomplish their financial goals. And they feel more confident to become engaged with their families for the first time in years. That’s the most important outcome for me!”

As Harry says, “Money is not all that’s needed,” but it is […]

Natalia Joaquin: Senior Financial Counselor Profile

What’s your background?

I studied economics at Le Moyne College where I graduated in 2011. While in school, I had the opportunity to tutor people and found a great passion for working one-on-one with people. My mom worked in the non-profit industry my whole life, so I feel like being mission-driven is in my blood.

After graduating, I joined Americorps working for SeedCo, a national nonprofit organization that advances economic opportunity for people, businesses and communities in NYC. Through that organization, I was exposed to helping people prepare their taxes. From there, I joined Brooklyn Co-Op Federal Credit Union where I worked as a tax preparation adivsor for the credit union members.

What brought you to Neighborhood Trust?

While at Brooklyn Co-Op helping clients prepare taxes, […]

Michelle Torres Sees Home Ownership in Her Future with Insights from Financial Counselor

“The whole experience has been very empowering. We may not have a lot of money, but now I know we have options and we can make choices towards financial stability and security. Financial skills are not a given for people in our communities, unfortunately, so we need organizations like Neighborhood Trust!”

—Michelle Torres, Financial Empowerment Center Client

Michelle used to work as an executive assistant, but because of some health challenges, she is now a homemaker and homeschooling parent to her 5-year-old son and 7-year-old daughter. Her husband works in construction. Despite being a very organized person who pays her debts on time, Michelle has big expenses, especially her food and medical expenses. In addition to the inalterable high cost […]

Neighborhood Trust CEO Justine Zinkin Receives 2017 Social Enterprise Leadership Award

Neighborhood Trust is thrilled to announce that CEO Justine Zinkin was recognized by the Tamer Center for Social Enterprise! A program at Columbia Business School, the Tamer Center trains the next generation of leaders to address social and environmental challenges.

The 2017 Social Enterprise Leadership Award recognizes her work with Neighborhood Trust Financial Partners, which marks 20 years of serving low-income individuals this year. During her remarks, Justine highlighted empathy and collaboration as core values that have driven the transformation and success of Neighborhood Trust.

We as an organization are so grateful to everyone who has been part of this journey, and are humbled by this recognition from such a prestigious organization.

Please view the video […]

Midtown Community Court: Restorative Justice through Financial Counseling

Neighborhood Trust’s Michelle Morillo, a Supervisor/Senior Financial Empowerment Counselor, posted a blog about her work providing financial counseling at Midtown Community Court. She writes,

“My main motivation comes from coaching others and watching them succeed. Many of them go on to gain employment, and their work with me gives them a strong foundation to rebuild trust in the financial system and accomplish their financial goals. And they feel more confident to become engaged with their families for the first time in years. That’s the most important outcome for me!”

Link: http://www.midtownjustice.org/2016/11/restorative-justice-through-financial.html

Midtown Community Court

By Michelle Morillo

Restorative justice is about more than making offenders pay their debts to society. It’s about the rehabilitation of offenders through reconciliation with victims and the community at large. […]

Used and Abused by the Used Car Industry

Department of Consumer Affairs and Council Member Espinal Hold Hearing to Shine Light on Consumers Being Scammed Out of Millions

NEW YORK, NY—Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Lorelei Salas and Council Member Rafael L. Espinal, Jr. today hosted a public hearing on predatory lending in the used car industry. From crushingly high interest rates to high-pressure sales tactics, consumers are being scammed out of millions of dollars. This hearing featured testimony from consumers who have been harmed, as well as national experts on predatory lending, who together demonstrated the scope of the problem, which will inform possible solutions at the local level. The hearing was hosted in Long Island City, where there is the largest concentration of licensed used car dealerships.

“For many families, especially those with low […]