When your neighbors prosper, you do too
Aurora’s challenge isn’t poverty; it’s participation. A disproportionate number of Aurorans have income, but not stability. We earn a living. But without assets like a home or savings account, we’re not financially secure enough to invest in the city where we live.
So we keep paying debt instead of supporting local business. We keep relocating when we could be renovating. The people who could make the biggest difference here are not free to contribute here. Change that, and you change the city.
That’s The Neighbor Project’s mission. We help people escape debt, save money and purchase homes—so they can be full participants in their communities. We’re helping our neighbors prosper, so our neighborhoods can prosper too. We’re reclaiming the city’s greatest asset: The people who already live here.
When individual families increase their financial health (reduce debt, save money, invest in assets), the entire community benefits. Take homeownership as an example: the greatest wealth-producing asset available. An individual family who is able to purchase a home, transitioning from renters to homeowners, now has an investment that has the power to stabilize that family’s financial and psychological health. Statistically, their children are 25% more likely graduate from high school and 116% more likely to graduate from college—and the net-worth of that family is 12x higher than a similarly situated family making an identical income. But, homeownership also has profound social benefit. Higher rates of homeownership in a community increases the tax base and overall housing values, improving the education system and attracting businesses, grocery stores, and sound financial institutions to a neighborhood.
In fact, According to The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities “There is a growing body of research that convincingly links…household financial well-being…to the health and growth of the U.S. Economy” (Bernstein, 2015). This means that the more we invest in individual family’s financial well-being, the more we are investing in and improving our collective well-being. That’s because we’re connected—all of us. (Read more about our core value of Connectedness)