Greenville County Library System, Greenville, SC

Greenville County Library System and its partners delivered a multifaceted project designed to turn personal finance assumptions into changed attitudes, changed attitudes into changed behaviors, and changed behaviors into changed habits. The project simultaneously delivered quality financial empowerment resources while combating obstacles that hinder participants from achieving their money goals. Assistance took the form of financial training classes, one-on-one needs assessments, tax-preparation and EITC services, workshops on the psychology of spending, and a public information campaign. The primary target audience was composed of females ages 25 to 45 in households with annual income of $45,000 or less, with particular attention to African-American and Hispanic wage earners with dependents living at home.

Key Activities: 

  • Provided financial empowerment workshop series for low- and moderate-income adults and youth. The adult and teen series were based on the FDIC Money Smart curriculum and also addressed the psychology of spending. Children’s programming was based in part on educational materials from the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland. The library partnered with the Hispanic Alliance, selected churches, and the Greenville County Human Relations Commission to co-sponsor Spanish-language programming. The library also worked with its partners to offer a slate of stand-alone classes on budgeting, credit, and saving strategies.
  • Partnered with the United Way of Greenville County to provide VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) services for participants at four library locations in the county. The library collaborated with AARP to offer financial counseling for these VITA participants.
  • Conducted a “Smart Money Saturday” event, with educational classes on banking, personal and household finances, and money management for families.
  • Conducted IDA (Individual Development Account) information sessions for regional audiences.

Looking to take your library’s financial literacy efforts to the next level? Connect with ALA’s Financial Literacy Interest Group.