NEW YORK, N.Y., December 16, 2015 – Working in Support of Education (w!se) is excited to announce the resounding success of its fall MoneyW!SE program for Survivors of Domestic Violence in New York. This fall, every survivor in the class passed the w!se Financial Literacy Certification Test. The MoneyW!SE program is made possible through generous funding provided by The Allstate Foundation.

The realities of domestic violence in the U.S. are sobering. According to the victim assistance agency Safe Horizon, 25% of U.S. women will suffer domestic violence in their lifetimes. Survivors are often left without a home, without money and without anyone to turn to.

To address this pressing issue, w!se focuses on helping domestic violence survivors get back on their feet financially.

Through its innovative MoneyWISE program, w!se offers a 12-week intensive course on personal finance to domestic violence survivors. At the culmination of each course, w!se administers its Financial Literacy Certification Test.  Clients who pass the Test become Certified Financially Literate and earn w!se’s coveted CFL™ certificate. Classes meet once a week in the evening for two hours. Food, child care and the opportunity for financial counseling are provided.

The program is helping to transform lives. Darlene Santana, Executive Director of the Metropolitan Center for Women and Children, said: “The MoneyW!SE Financial Literacy classes have exceeded all of my expectations.  The topics are very helpful and practical.  I would often find our clients in the shelter working on their homework or discussing what they learned the evening before.  The budgeting class was extremely helpful.”

Partnerships are key to the success of MoneyW!SE and, in New York City, the program is delivered in partnership with the NYC Mayor’s Office to Combat Domestic Violence and their five Family Justice Centers (located in all five boroughs), the Financial Planning Association of NY and Sanctuary for Families, (the largest domestic violence shelter in NYC).

“Congratulations to the members of this fall’s MoneyW!SE program on their extraordinary success,” said Phyllis Frankfort Perillo, w!se President and CEO. “This program, generously sponsored by The Allstate Foundation, contributes to the national effort to help survivors lead financially independent lives,” she added.

MoneyWISE is offered in each of the five boroughs of New York City as well as in Philadelphia, San Diego, New Orleans and Salt Lake City. Since it was first launched in 2009, nearly 500 domestic violence survivors nationally have become Certified Financially Literate™ and 320 have become certified in NYC.


About The Allstate Foundation

Established in 1952, The Allstate Foundation is an independent, charitable organization made possible by subsidiaries of The Allstate Corporation. Allstate and The Allstate Foundation sponsor community initiatives to promote “safe and vital communities,” “tolerance, inclusion, and diversity” and “economic empowerment.”  The Allstate Foundation believes in financial potential of every individual and in helping America’s families achieve their American dream. For additional information, visit www.clicktoempower.org.

About w!se

Working In Support of Education (w!se) is a New York based educational 501(c)3 nonprofit dedicated to improving lives nationwide through programs that develop financial literacy and readiness for college and the workplace.  w!se serves low-to-moderate-income communities nationally. Media Contact: Steven Appel at 212-421-2700sappel@wise-ny.org

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