Kevin Carley, Interim Executive Director
Welcome to CFL!
Founded in 2008, by United States citizen, Claude Rwaganje formerly from the Republic of Congo, Community Financial Literacy (CFL) is a growing 501(c)(3) non-profit based in Portland, Maine. CFL offers financial literacy courses and one-on-one financial counseling for individuals and families. Our services are open to all refugees, immigrants, asylees, and low-income individuals in Greater Portland and Lewiston/Auburn, Maine.
There is a great need in the community for financial education. Many refugees and immigrants come from cash-based societies and struggle to understand the complex American financial system. The lack of understanding and access to U.S. financial institutions is a primary barrier to economic and social integration into the local community.
To help educate Maine’s newest residents, CFL offers three financial literacy courses, Basic Money Management in America, Saving to Build Wealth and Microfinance. All of CFL’s services are offered at no cost to participants and are available to all immigrants, refugees, asylees and low-income individuals; with an emphasis on “New Mainers”. Each course consists of five two-hour individual classes covering topics such as:
Setting and Meeting Financial Goals
Building, Maintaining, and Repairing Credit
Saving for College, Retirement, Buying a Home or a Car
Basics of Small Business Management
Our courses not only instruct participants on good money management practices, but also build aspirations by showing them how to save for college, work towards homeownership, purchase an automobile or start a business. In addition, CFL provides one-on-one counseling for specific financial concerns or questions, and through partnerships, issues regarding workforce development and higher education.
Claude Rwaganje and Carley Kevin
CFL is the only organization working in the area focusing on financial education for refugees and immigrants. In fact, CFL is a refugee-founded organization. As trusted figures and leaders with the Greater Portland community, we are proud to have a multicultural Board of Directors and Staff that combines life experiences from abroad and United States; to understand and meet the needs of the specific challenges newcomers face.
To date, CFL has reached more than 1000 “ New Mainers” (refugees and immigrants) through our courses, one-on-one counseling sessions, and participation in orientation programs for newcomers to Maine. Each year, through our formal courses, counseling or outreach, hundreds of refugees and immigrants learn how to plan for a future of financial stability to reach their personal and professional goals.
For more information on CFL’s classes, one-on-one counseling, and college access counseling, please visit our Programs page or contact us directly.
For more information on CFL’s classes or one-on-one counseling, please visit our Programs page.