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Extra Mile

  “I love the intentionality of planned weekly meetings that promote both practical learning and relationship building.  Three words I would use to describe the benefits of Extra Mile are structure, wholeness and hope.” - Extra Mile Coach Kim

 

 “I’m stronger now. I can do things I didn’t think I could ever do.” - Extra Mile Graduate

 

Overview

Extra Mile is a free, four-month coaching program focused on money management and relationship-building. Individuals or couples apply to the program and commit to a high level of accountability. The qualities looked for in participants are those associated with successful transition out of poverty - willingness to learn new skills, try new strategies, and meet new people. Participants must be employed or working towards employment with some sort of income. Financial rewards/incentives are available to participants throughout program. 
Components  
Coach/Support Team  
Each participant is matched with a trained volunteer coach and given a four-week orientation that includes strengths assessment, goal-setting and financial management education.  Participants meet with their coach weekly for 4-month program duration. Additional support persons are matched with the participant and coach as appropriate to provide additional support. Training, materials, and support are provided by Love INC's professional social work staff.
Point System/Incentives 
A point system is used at each coaching session to review the participant’s budgeting and progress on goals. The point system helps reinforce formation of new, effective habits. Monetary incentives/rewards are given based on point score.  Incentives/rewards can total more than $600.
 
Community Connection
Relationship-building and development of new connections are essential components of Extra Mile. Our goal in matching our Participants with capable, compassionate volunteer Coaches is that they will develop an additional supportive relationship that will last beyond the Extra Mile program. Additionally, Participants are encouraged to engage in a community group or class of their choice at least once a month. Our hope is that they will expand their social network and gain a greater sense of connectedness in the community.
 
  
  Program Goals for Participants
  • Develop financial self-sufficiency
  • Recognize their strengths and build confidence
  • Strengthen relationships 
  
Opportunities for Church & Individual Involvement (can select one or more):
  • Go-the-Extra Mile - be a personal coach - either individually, with a co-coach, or as a team leader of your church or group.
  • Fund-an-Extra Mile - provide monetary or in-kind donations for one or more participant's rewards (individual/church donations, drives, host a pantry or closet)

 

 

 Highlights from 2013:

  • Two of our Extra Mile graduates started a support group for single, Latino mothers, which has now been meeting weekly for 5 months.
  • Two of our Extra Mile graduates enrolled in college, one for the first time.

  • Ongoing support was provided for the children of two participants, a mentor for a participant’s teenage son and weekly connection to a local Awanas group for four siblings.

  • Two donated vehicles were provided to participants, allowing them to eliminate a car payment and balance their budgets.

  • 100% of our graduates reported creating and using a budget for the first time.

  • Graduates reported the following met goals – consistently living within a budget, creating a savings account, developing meaningful relationships, eliminating debt and expanding social networks.

  • One participant was helped to establish a checking account at a bank after being denied by other banks for several years.

What Extra Mile Participants are saying:

 “The relationships built were the best part of the program. I found people who cared about me, gave me strength, made me feel wanted, and made me feel like I could do it.”

One participant reported that she experienced “total transformation” in her life. She learned “budgeting, achieving goals, and discernment in relationships.”   

 

Contact Kelly Hill at kellyh@columbialoveinc.org or 256-7662 for more information