Getting Ready for Tax Season 2007
Filling out tax forms intimidates even the most confident of readers. Keeping a budget and managing bank accounts are also practices that invite procrastination and avoidance.
As with so many things, however, information and education are the way to facing up to our fears and empowering ourselves. Once the tax forms are filed, we can celebrate by making plans to make tax time 2007 simpler and less anxiety-producing.
This Financial Literacy Month, you and your learner can explore the wealth of resources available online. One unique resource is Project Money, a printed workbook and online resource guide created by adult literacy students in California. You can view the online articles and tips at http://www.projectmoney.org.
The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants also has a wealth of articles on a variety of topics, including home ownership, starting out as a young couple, saving for college, and preparing for retirement. (http://www.360financialliteracy.org/) An online search will take you to a host of other sites to explore.
You can take this project further by turning it into a field trip. Identify someone who would be helpful at your local bank, where either you or your learner have accounts, and make an appointment to meet with him or her with your learner. (You would not need to identify yourselves as part of a literacy program.) This would be a wonderful opportunity for your learner to ask whatever questions he or she has and may have felt uncomfortable asking on his or her own.
If a number of learners in the program are interested in a workshop, many banks are willing to do workshops and presentations as part of their community reinvestment activities.
Feeling confident about money is key to self-sufficiency and independence. Gaining this knowledge is a true lifelong gift and one that learners can share with their children and grandchildren.