Berlin, Vermont – The Northfield Savings Bank Foundation has announced that it is investing $450,000 in key financial literacy initiatives over the next three years.  Capstone Community Action and Champlain Valley Office of Economic Opportunity will receive the funding to build stronger skills and independence among constituents in Central Vermont and Chittenden County.

A lack of financial resources and understanding inhibits many Vermonters from renting apartments, accessing transportation, opening bank accounts, managing credit, funding education, and saving for important life building blocks. The critical role that parents play in teaching their children how to properly manage money is a vital condition for longer term wellbeing.  When one generation is financially ill equipped, the next continues to bear burden.

Northfield Savings Bank President and CEO, Thomas Leavitt, recognizes the importance of facing this national challenge on a local level.  “Financial literacy is the ability of an individual or family to navigate the money choices that lead to fruitful lives”, commented Leavitt.  “This is a much discussed topic that has compelling influence on outcomes for our fellow citizens, our economy, and the fabric of life in Vermont communities. We choose to do something about it by partnering with Capstone Community Action and CVOEO.  These two organizations are well led and deliver programs that directly take on the challenge close to home.”

Jim White, Financial Futures Program Director at CVOEO, stated, “The partnership with the Northfield Savings Bank Foundation is a wonderful opportunity for CVOEO’s Growing Money Program to improve and expand financial and credit capability services for low and middle income households. This award allows us to build on our twelve years of experience in the field by adding staffing, training and outreach.  It is truly a gift to the agency and the community.”

Liz Scharf, Savings and Credit Program Coordinator at Capstone, added “NSB’s commitment to financial capability allows our financial coaches to work with more individuals and families to help them achieve action-driven goals related to savings, spending habits, credit and debt management.  When clients work with our coaches to develop spending plans to improve their economic outcomes, we see real change.  We are grateful to the NSB Foundation for this partnership, and for recognizing the need to help more economically vulnerable Vermonters build a better future.”

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Northfield Savings Bank was founded in 1867 by a local university president who believed a mutual bank, owned by its depositors, would benefit the community. 148 years later, NSB continues this tradition. We are one of the nation's remaining mutual, depositor-owned organizations, and the second largest bank headquartered  in Vermont. With 13 full service locations in Central Vermont and Chittenden County, we provide a comprehensive range of personal and business banking solutions, backed by a range of electronic delivery channels and a new technologically advanced Operations Center in Berlin, VT opened in October 2015 .  Our 110% Banking commitment directs 10% of our earnings to Vermont community organizations.  We are rated Outstanding for our Community Reinvestment Act performance.  Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender.