A Nonprofits to Know feature about AccountAbility Minnesota, a nonprofit organization that provides pathways to enhance income for low income Minnesotans through free tax and financial services. To learn more about AccountAbility Minnesota, visit http://www.accountabilitymn.org.
Filmed with the Nikon D5100.
Edited in Final Cut Pro X.
I’m a single parent. I have three kids. I take care of my mom who is disabled, almost legally blind. And then I kind of help out my daughter a lot. She’s newly married, but she has three kids. AccountAbility Minnesota has always been really helpful, saving me some money. I got to look at my credit report last year. They’ve offered different savings plans or ideas on how to save. I just kind of like the nice homey feel and the fact that I need the help and they give it freely and with respect.
AccountAbility Minnesota has been in existence for 40 years. We provide free tax assistance and financial services for low and moderate income individuals and families as well as for small business owners. And at the root of our work is economic justice. The core of our work is free tax assistance.
You know, I found out about the organization through one of the online volunteer listings. It seemed like it was up my alley because I was looking for people with financial backgrounds. I volunteered for one year, really enjoyed it, and that summer I joined the board. I get to help people directly face to face, and the nice thing about this is you’re going to spend 15 or 20 minutes for half an hour with somebody, learn a little bit about them, find out about their experiences, and just help them get something that they either couldn’t get as well on their own or would have to pay a lot of money for it. So it’s immediate satisfaction. You get to help somebody, and you get to see the results within an hour.
We have a commitment to make sure that people not only get their taxes done or take care of that end, but we’re looking for the person to grow holistically, which is why we offer these financial services. Oh, you know what? Savings account, credit reports. You know, you can meet with a financial expert. So we don’t just want to take care of you now, we’re looking at your future and we want to help you secure that.
It’s a service that’s highly needed in the communities that we serve. It provides access, sometimes for the first time for the persons that we serve to accounting services. We’re offering this free service. This is their time to make up that time and kind of get a little ahead.
There’s just so many things that my tax refund takes care of. All year long, little things come up where we get pushed a little bit behind. Being older, I don’t have my family to fall back on. There’s nobody to help me. So if I fall behind, I just do without or I struggle the next month. And that means cutting out food, gas, not getting a car repair. It’s nice to have somebody like AccountAbility Minnesota go to bat for you. You know, it’s nice to have somebody that is looking out for our best interests.
We equip people. We prepare them and that’s what you need, an organization that’s going to equip people so that long after you’re gone they can keep on growing.
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