Nonprofit financial group offers free help with two classes for families

Oct 2 2011 - 11:09pm

OGDEN -- Two classes to help people in a down economy -- one to help them out of a bad situation and another to prevent bad situations from happening at all -- are being offered by Cornerstone Financial.

Starting Thursday and running for four weeks will be a family finance camp.

Cornerstone Financial, a nonprofit financial adviser, is partnering with Community Action Partnership and Utah State University Extension Service to offer the class, which will be split into two groups -- one for adults and one for children.

Dinner is included in the 2 1/2-hour class that begins at 6 p.m. at the Ogden-Weber Community Action building, 3150 Grant Ave.

Kristin Johnson, director of housing for Cornerstone Financial, said the class offers financial planning to the whole family. Topics include money tracking, budgets, spending, spending versus saving, understanding credit and credit scores, raising children with good money values and information about insurance -- life, homeowner's and auto.

The group tries to offer the class quarterly. Turnout for the class is usually pretty good in the fall, Johnson said, and it is always important to get people on a good financial plan.

"This is a good time, because kids are back in school and people are more ready to be inside," Johnson said.

Right now the class is free, but the group may have to start charging in the future because much of the funding has been cut for the programs.

"We are doing everything we can to keep it free," Johnson said. "Our plan is to not ever charge for the family finance class."

The other class, starting Oct. 19, teaches how to avoid foreclosure and the pitfalls associated with it. The class is a one-time class that begins at 5 p.m. at 3340 Harrison Blvd., Suite 120, in Ogden.

Attendance is free and open to the public, but space is limited.

Johnson said often people wait to get financial counseling until they are on the brink of bankruptcy.

"Many just don't know how to find out about us unless it is by word of mouth," she said.

Cornerstone offers many types of financial counseling and helps clients work out financial problems. Most services are free. Help is always there, but Johnson said she would like to see people come in before things get really bad for them. She noted that's why the family finance camp is such a good idea.

To sign up for the family finance camp, call 801-399-8207. Call 801-621-5600 to register for the foreclosure workshop.

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