Community program

Step Up Savannah Launches New Community Level Up Program

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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – A local organization makes it easier for those struggling financially to connect with resources that can help them.

Step Up Savannah launches its first asset-based community development program called Level Up.

Program participants will have the opportunity to create an individualized action plan by learning basic financial literacy skills, researching educational pathways, and connecting with other necessary resources available in the community.

Program officials hope the courses will help promote economic opportunity and financial security, especially for those battling the impacts of the pandemic.

“This new program and new framework for Step Up Savannah actually puts the person in poverty in the driver’s seat. It allows them to be a partner of community resources, ”said Alicia Johnson, Executive Director of Step Up Savannah.

Learn more about Cornelius Lloyd, Asset Building Coordinator at Step Up Savannah, below:

Johnson says asset-based community development (ABCD) is a nationally recognized best practice that relies on assets within the community.

“ABCD differs from more traditional deficit-based approaches that focus on identifying and serving needs through ad hoc social information or services,” Johnson said.

“Level Up is an empowerment program that not only connects individuals to services, but gives them the tools to be successful, helps facilitate the process, and then overcome any obstacles they may encounter along the way,” a- she added. “We are delighted to bring together all of our existing partners – the City of Savannah, County of Chatham, Bank On, Neighborhood Improvement Association, Savannah Tech, GoodWill, the Chatham Apprentice Program and many more in this new effort to help solve our old problems around generational poverty.

The program will include a series of free online courses held every Tuesday and Thursday over a seven-week period starting October 20 and ending December 2.

Step Up Savannah is accepting applications until October 2. Applicants must live in Chatham County or within the City of Savannah limits and meet one or more of the following eligibility criteria:

  • you have participated in the CAP or the Step Up Savannah public benefits program
  • you are a current parent of Head Start or receive free or reduced lunch allowances for children
  • you have repeatedly requested assistance in the event of a crisis or have been referred by a partner agency
  • you need help from Step Up’s Workforce Development Program
  • you have been referred for help getting through the cycle of a financial crisis

Participants will receive a small stipend to cover Internet service costs associated with the program.

The Level Up program will be facilitated by Step Up Savannah Asset Building coordinator Cornelius Lloyd. For more information on the Level Up program, call 912-525-1169 or email [email protected]