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Organization announces initiative to end family poverty

Millions of dollars are now earmarked to help bring an end to family poverty in Cincinnati and northern Kentucky. (WKRC)

CINCINNATI (WKRC) - Millions of dollars are now earmarked to help bring an end to family poverty in Cincinnati and northern Kentucky.

The funds come as part of a new anti-poverty initiative announced Monday.

In four years the goal is to reach at least 500 families across Cincinnati and northern Kentucky through the Family Independence Initiative to help fight poverty in our region.

Monday morning, the GreenLight Fund and the Greater Cincinnati Foundation announced a $2.4 million investment to bring FII to Cincinnati.

Right now. FII is in seven cities across the country, working to fight poverty through investing directly in low-income families so they can achieve prosperity.

When they partner with FII, families network with other families to set goals they want to achieve, from continuing education to buying a new car or home. Those families track their progress toward those goals and provide that data to FII. As they make progress, FII gives them access to money to help reach those goals.

They say on average after two years, families see a 23 percent increase in monthly income, a 60 percent decrease in subsidies and also many double their income and assets.

"Families who are working hard tend to lift themselves out of poverty without a lot of assistance, but what happens is a car breaks down, a child gets sick, something happens that they don't have the capital to bounce back from, and that's when families slip back in," said Vashti Rutledge, the Cincinnati FII director. "And so what FII is saying that, with the network you built and a little bit of additional resources, you can weather that storm."

Rutledge says they are working with churches, social services and other organizations in the community to reach families, but people who are interested in the initiative can reach out to her directly.

You can contact Rutledge by emailing her at vashti@fii.org.


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