For those living in poverty, taking control of their finances may seem like an impossible task.

For Courtanie Sanders, though, a moment came when she said, ‘Enough is enough.’

“I’m tired of being able to have the creditors, you know, call me and me not want to answer the phone,” Sanders says.

The Bedford Stuyvesant native googled, “Free financial advice NYC” and found the city’s Office of Financial Empowerment. There, she met Ideste Severin.

“Ideste Severin changed my life, Sanders says.

Severin is the program manager for the Financial Empowerment Center that operates out of the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation. She says all problems are solvable over time.

“Some problems you can solve immediately. It means a counselor picking up the phone and calling a creditor. It may also mean maybe it takes a three-year time period of working with that client to really turn around their lives financially,” says Severin, who is Program manager for Financial Empowerment Center at the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation.

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