Minneapolis, MN – At a time of rising interest rates and economic uncertainty for millions of Americans, a Minnesota-based non-profit corporation, Penny Forward Inc, has expanded their innovative online financial education platform to include a brand-new online course designed to provide an introduction to credit reports to more than seven million Americans who are blind or have low vision.
Founded in 2021 by Minnesota native Christopher Peterson, who is himself blind, Penny Forward exists to close the wealth gap for people who are blind or who experience vision loss. By closing this gap, Peterson believes that poverty, unemployment and under-employment levels which are endemic for blind people can finally begin to be addressed. “credit is in important part of the conversation when we talk about the 70 percent unemployment rate in the blind community”, Peterson says. “95 percent of companies do some kind of credit check on job candidates, so having a clean credit report is just as important as having a polished resume and nailing a job interview.”
Unlike most online education platforms, the Penny Forward platform was designed from the ground up to meet the unique needs of people who are blind or have low vision. Every webpage is optimized to be accessible for people who use assistive technologies such as screen magnification and software that reads text aloud and/or reproduces the text in tactile braille characters. “We want our members to be able to focus on what they’re learning rather than figuring out how to navigate the screen”, Peterson says. “We’re also addressing concerns that are unique to the blind community using instructors who are blind themselves and therefore share those concerns.”
Penny Forward offers $9 monthly and $99 annual memberships, and members can take advantage of self-paced, online financial education courses, regularly-scheduled group discussions held virtually, and access to one to one coaching services—all designed to help members improve their financial health.
Penny Forward’s second online course, Concerned About Credit: An Introduction To Credit Scores, Credit Reports, And Why They Matter”, covers basic credit concepts, how to obtain credit reports in accessible formats such as large print, Braille, and audio CD, and behaviors that demonstrate healthy credit usage. All members who complete the course before July 1st, 2022, will be entered into a drawing to win a $25 Amazon gift card. Penny Forward plans to launch more courses, including courses on digging out of debt, building credit from the ground up, budgeting, and investing, by the end of the year.
ABOUT PENNY FORWARD
Founded in 2021, Penny Forward Inc is a Minnesota Nonprofit Corporation whose mission is to help blind people confidently navigate the landscape of personal finance through education, mentoring, and mutual support. They envision a world where blind people have the resources to weather hard times, take advantage of rare opportunities, and generously support causes they deeply care about. More information about Penny Forward’s mission, vision, and team is available at their web site, pennyforward.com.