2018

 ANNUAL

 REPORT

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MISSION

We help women and girls make choices toward becoming independent, productive and financially stable.

OUR APPROACH

YourLife Finance Classes

These are free financial education classes that are taught at over 30partner agencies in the city. Classes are taught in both English and Spanish and cover topics such as budgeting, banking, saving, paying yourself first, and credit. 

2018:

the year of

2017 was certainly a year of change. Two years prior in 2015, we entered into a three-year strategic plan where we planned to reinvest in our programs and raise the caliber of services we provided to our clients. Much of that important work came to fruition in 2017. We launched our Possibility Group program out of pilot phase and into the lives our clients and rewrote the program curriculum in the process. We converted all of our RISE! schools to the four-year model, added a new school district, and rewrote the RISE! curriculum to have a pointed focus on preparing our students for life after high school. We made the strategic decision to take our Finance Classes to the next level by developing a new curriculum that speaks directly to the needs of our clients. We also decided to reinvest in our volunteer instructors and enhanced their training so we can better serve our clients. We hired our first one-on-one financial coach to launch YourLife Coaching for the first time. We also joined the 21st century and took our information database online. We now have the ability to track our clients and supporters in a streamlined way to ensure we are serving them to the best of our ability. 

Each change we made in 2017 was essential to the continued success of our organization. We cannot wait to see the impact the changes we made in 2017 will have on our clients for the years to come. 

In 2017, it became clear to us that a major overhaul of our finance classes was necessary to maintain relevancy for our clients. The curriculum we were using was outdated, redundant, lacked a philosophy, and was not specific to our female audience.  

 

We set out to find a new curriculum that spoke to our clients, but after months of research, we came up empty-handed. There was nothing in the market that spoke to our client specifically.  

 

Our clients are overwhelmingly low-income and in a state of transition in their lives. Often they are single mothers, in between housing, fleeing domestic violence, or reentering society. Their financial needs differ significantly from the needs of the general population. It became clear to us that in order to best serve our clients, we needed to create content that had them in mind.

 

In May of 2018, we teamed up with a nationally recognized consultant to make our vision a reality.  

 

The new curriculum is designed to be taught in a six-class progressive series. The classes are focused on the basics of budgeting on a limited income, credit repair and recovery, how to prioritize bill paying and how to set future financial goals no matter your income. Each class in the series builds on the knowledge gained in the previous class, but can also be taught as a standalone workshop.

 

By the end of the six class progression, our clients not only have the knowledge they need to understand their finances, but also have actual concrete strategies that they can use to change their lives today. 

In 2019, we plan to implement the curriculum.

2017 was our second year of our Possibility Group program. We created YourLife Possibility Groups with the belief that women could benefit from sharing their experiences, building each other’s confidence, learning from one another, and supporting each other. That belief became reality in 2017 with the success of our clients. This year we graduated 57 women from four groups. While in the program, 21 one of those women accomplished at least one goal, and 35 women continue to work towards their self-defined goals. In 2017 we also made the strategic decisions to rewrite our Possibility Group curriculum. After a year of administering the groups, we felt we could do more for our clients. We launched the new Possibility Group model in the Fall of 2017, and have seen a tremendous improvement in the commitment of our clients under the new model.

 

Our first group to benefit from the new program was launched on October 31, 2017 in partnership with United Way Montgomery County's Women's Leadership Council. This group received a scholarship for child care from the Leadership Council and the United Way provided the women with dinner and other incentives. This group was certainly our most successful of the program to date. We saw an organic energy develop from session to session with these women. They truly enjoyed coming together to share ideas, they encouraged one another and helped each other achieve their goals. 

In 2017, we made tremendous strides in boosting the effectiveness of our RISE! program. This year we provided 1755 hours of guidance and mentoring to 245 girls. We have fully transitioned all of our schools to the four year model and redeveloped the RISE! curriculum. The new curriculum focuses on goal setting, career planning, and financial education. The curriculum was also redesigned to specifically address the needs of our participants as they complete financial aid and FASFA applications. After a collaboration period with our partner schools, it became clear that a focus on the financial aid application process was essential to the success of our senior girls. As a result of the new curriculum, we anticipate each of our senior girls will apply for college and complete a FASFA application.

As we prepare to graduate our first group of girls from the program in the spring of 2018, we expect that our participants will leave the program with a plan for their future in place, know the exact steps necessary to implement their plan, and have a tight knight support group of lifelong friends to help them achieve their plan. 

 OUR IMPACT

Our Programs Served

clients in 2017 

of clients
 increased knowledge

Classes Taught

partner agencies hosted a YourLife Finance Class or Possibility Group

volunteer hours

volunteers

of RISE! girls feel confident they can accomplish their plan

of clients feel confident they can achieve their financial goal

girls participated in RISE!

schools participated 

groups of girls

We predominantly serve women who are in a state of transition in their lives.

11%
Families
i
n Crisis

18%
Transitional
Living 

 

23%
Jail Reentry

28%
Workforce Development

Most of the women we serve have a High School Degree equivalent or less.

12%
Bachelor Degree or higher

28%
Associates/Technical

  47% 

High School/GED

11%

Less than High School

Most of the women we serve are looking for employment.

14%
Full Time

14%
Part Time

57%
Unemployed

Most of the women we serve have a High School Degree equivalent or less.

11%
Families
i
n Crisis

18%
Transitional
Living 

 

23%
Jail Reentry

28%
Workforce Development

12%
Bachelor Degree or higher

28%
Associates/Technical

  47% 

High School/GED

11%

Less than High School

Most of the women we serve are looking for employment.

14%
Full Time

14%
Part Time

57%
Unemployed

We predominantly serve women who are in a state of transition in their lives.

11%
Families
i
n Crisis

18%
Transitional
Living 

 

23%
Jail Reentry

28%
Workforce Development

Most of the women we serve have a High School Degree equivalent or less.

12%
Bachelor Degree or higher

28%
Associates/Technical

  47% 

High School/GED

11%

Less than High School

Most of our clients are looking for employment.

Our clients are generally in their prime earning years. 

5%
Under 18

11%
18-24

70%
25-55

14%
Over 55

14%
Full Time

14%
Part Time

57%
Unemployed

Monika, YourLife Finance Particpant

“I am finally mentally, emotionally and maturely ready to properly handle my money. The weeks of financial literacy courses that The Women's Resource of Greater Houston provided for all of us ladies at The Women's Home have been an invaluable and absolutely necessary staple in my journey into self-betterment and striving toward an enjoyable life.”

                                                                                 

Sheniquia, RISE! sophomore

“Joining RISE! has altered my perspective on life tremendously. I have now accepted that my grades are my top priority throughout high school, which has helped me increase my GPA and to make honor roll for my entire sophomore year. I also now share a bond with the other girls in my class. The other girls not only help me through my journey, but they also motivate me to be the best I can. Being in RISE! has helped me see the path to realize my dreams.” 

Vanessa, YourLIfe Possibility Group Client

 “Before starting YourLife Possibilities I felt so broken and discouraged around my finances. I was in a vicious cycle of work hard, feel bad, spend money, feel bad etc. This class and the women that give their time and share their experiences taught me that my behavior and belief behind money is connected to so many other things in my life. That by changing the way I believe about myself and my finances that I can accomplish my goals and live a financially successful life. My eyes are opened and I have the tools I need to break the cycle and to go from surviving to living.”                                                                                 

Volunteer of The Year:

Lyn Edmund

Financial Outcomes

Board of Trsutees

EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

President
Jessica Neikirk
Cookie Pirate LLC   

 

Immediate Past President
Vice President of Development

Cortney Cole
HFF


Incoming President
Rosine Matthews
Wells Fargo


Secretary
Claudia Mollerup-Madsen
Morgan Stanley
 

Vice President of Governance
Mary Axelrad
Gray, Reed & McGraw    

 

Vice President of Finance
Rebekah Le
KBR

Vice President of Programs
Paul Theriot
Alesco 

        

 

BOARD OF TRUSTEES

 

Carolyn Galfione
Linscomb & Williams


Yasmin Huebinger
Capital One Bank    

 

Jason Qualls
BBVA Compass

 

Jennifer Gould
Junior League Representative    

 

Jan Leger
University of Houston Graduate  College of Social Work    

 

Tracey Wickersham
Bank of Texas

 

Karen Hanson-Flowers
Alpheus Communications

        

 

Advisory Council

Laury Adams

Sue Walmsley Amash
 

Susan Bischoff

 

Angela DeSilva

 

Lisa DiNorscia

 

Cindy Griffin

Karen Ostrum George

 

Rebecca T. Kirkland, M.D.

 

Irene Liberatos

 

Linda Lorelle

 

Linda K. May

 

Michele Alvarado

Minerva Pérez

Gay A. Roane

Reuben Rosof

 

Rhonda Sands

 

Beth Ann Scher

 

Janice Stooksberry

Supporters

$30,000-$40,000

Capital One Bank
United Way of Greater Houston
J.Jill Compassion Fund

$20,000-$29,999

Wells Fargo
Hallie Vanderhider

BBVA Compass

Hamill Foundation

$10,000-$19,999

Arline Guefen
Gray Reed & McGraw
Hines
Independent Bank
Mercantil Bank
State Farm Insurance
The Brown Foundation
The Huffington Foundation

$5,000-$9,999

Florence S. Ducey Foundation
Amegy Bank
Morgan Stanley
Tudor, Pickering, Holt & Company
Laury Adams
Frost Bank
John T. Shea Foundation
AIG
 Reuben Rosof