Financial Hope Collaborative

Building Financial Self-Confidence In Low to Moderate Income Households.

Julie Kalkowski and student at Creighton University

The Financial Hope Collaborative and its Financial Success Program, housed at the Heider College of Business, have been instrumental in helping many low to moderate income (LMI) families in the Omaha metropolitan area find financial stability.

The Financial Hope Collaborative was started when United Way of the Midlands created the Financial Stability Partnership in 2006. The Financial Success Program began in 2009 and has an 86% retention rate—one of the highest retention rates in the country for a financial education program.

The program’s curriculum helps LMI families address immediate financial issues and develop decision making skills in areas, such as:

  • Tracking expenses
  • Saving for emergencies
  • Repairing credit reports

This year-long program provides ongoing financial coaching and assists participants in developing personal and easy-to-use money management systems.

For more information, contact financialConfidence [at] creighton [dot] edu (subject: Financial%20Success%20Program%20-%20More%20Info) (Tamicka) at 402.280.3736 or email financialConfidence [at] creighton [dot] edu.

Financial Success Program Course Outline

Financial Success Program Course Outline:

Students receive an overview of the Financial Success Program.  Students commit to the one-year or six-month process depending on curriculum track. All participants fill out an application and take an online pre-test prior to beginning the class.

Psychology of Money
Understanding the “how” and the “why” behind our spending patterns is key to making behavioral changes. A group exercise helps reinforce this classroom lesson.

Money Management
Students are given tools to begin tracking expenses. Tracking expenses is vital to setting financial goals.

Predatory Lending
The truth about predatory lending is exposed. Alternative loan methods are shared, and the students begin to realize the value of good credit.

Credit Report
Students receive a copy of their credit report and score. They will learn how to read their report, ways to raise their scores, and how to dispute any errors.

Understanding Utilities
Representatives from the local utility companies teach students how to read their bills, company policies, share energy saving tips, and help students sign up for the level payment plan.

Understanding Insurance & Retirement
Students gain a better understanding of the importance of having a retirement income and insurance for auto, life, health, and home or rental.

Ways to Save
Students receive practical advice on ways to save on groceries, clothes shopping, paying down debt, future needs, and retirement.

Goal Setting 
Students are introduced to S.M.A.R.T. goals and prepared for setting realistic, measurable objectives. They spend class time reviewing the goals they would like to address.  Then, students meet monthly for the next year with an assigned financial coach that works with them on ways to improve their finances while working towards their S.M.A.R.T goals.

Financial Products
The students are presented with available financial products that are now available because they have completed the course, such as Debt Consolidation Loans, Save to Win, and Bank on the Heartland.

A year of individual financial coaching begins the month following a student’s FSP graduation.

Financial Success Program Funders

Thanks to all who currently support and have supported the Financial Hope Collaborative:

       $100,000+  Annually

       Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (2017-2018)

       Sherwood Foundation (since 2007)


      $50,000 Annually

Weitz Family Foundation (since 2006)

William and Ruth Scott Family Foundation (since 2006)

                              Peter Kiewit Foundation (2017)


                             Additional Funders:  

First National Bank of Omaha (since 2012)

Sokolof Foundation (since 2013)

Centris Federal Credit Union (2018)

Creighton University (2017-2018)

Heider College of Business Dean’s Fund (since 2010)


        Past Funders:

        FINRA Investor Education Foundation  (2010—2016)

        United Way of the Midlands (2010-2014)

        Con-Agra Foundation (2013-2015)