Nashville, TN

United Way: How to break the cycle of proverty

Lenny Schumacher
Scott Graham/Unsplash

NASHVILLE, TN — Greater Nashville is thriving, but many people are being left behind. Housing prices are rapidly rising, while wages are failing to keep pace.

There are some ways to make things better:

  • Individuals should be given the education and training they require to obtain better, higher-paying jobs

People need higher-paying jobs with opportunities for advancement to escape poverty. However, to obtain these positions, they must have the appropriate post-secondary education, training, or certification.

That is the key to raising wages and stabilizing housing in our community. United Way's partner organizations are working to provide individuals with the education and training they need to earn a livable wage and set them on the path to a stable, financially secure future.

  • Ensure that our neighbors keep more of their earnings

Fifty-five million Americans say they have no emergency savings, which means that even a single trip to the hospital could set off a vicious cycle of debt that could lead to poverty or homelessness.

Every year, United Way's Volunteer Income Tax Assistance free tax preparation program returns millions of dollars to the community, allowing more money to be spent on necessities such as food, rent, gas, and child care.

  • Help family savings increase

Whether our neighbors are experiencing chronic financial difficulties or an unexpected crisis, individualized counseling at United Way's Financial Empowerment Center can assist those in need in moving toward financial stability.

Professionally trained financial counselors assist clients in overcoming debt, establishing and improving credit, developing a budget, opening a bank account, and saving for the future, all at no cost.

More than one thousand people who completed vocational training to obtain new jobs were connected to higher-earning jobs to earn higher and improve their finances, with more than $2 million in debt reduction achieved by free financial counseling clients.

United Way collaborates with over 100 organizations to make this all possible. To find out more, visit

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Nashville, TN

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