HFLA of Northeast Ohio can provide a hand up to our community because of your continued support, regardless of the obstacles ahead.

As we prepare for the future, we are continuing to make our lending model more agile to respond quickly to evolving community needs. We know that HFLA’s interest-free loans provide much needed support to Northeast Ohioans and prevent personal financial crisis. To build on this support, we have launched both a credit building loan and car loan.

The need for interest-free loans in 2022 will be great as inflation rises and economic challenges continue. To help our community address these financial hurdles, we need you. Your gift provides Northeast Ohioans with the support they need to find financial freedom and achieve their dreams. 

Thank you.

2021 Loan Recipient Stories

Mykol needed to find a way to make a fresh start after leaving a bad marriage. HFLA’s $1,500 emergency loan helped cover the security deposit for her new home and get the essentials to start over. Just as things were starting to settle, Mykol’s retirement benefits unexpectedly stopped. Our program team put her in touch with the financial coaches at ESOP who helped her establish a budget and apply strategies to improve her credit. While Mykol was waiting for her retirement benefits to start back up, HFLA was able to provide a second, $400 loan. Mykol is now able to work on rebuilding her savings, improve her credit and find stability in her new life.

Before the pandemic hit, Shainna was running an event planning business and working a second job. After the state shutdown, she lost both of these incomes. She was denied unemployment and had to make due on savings and whatever other little income she could find. Shainna eventually found herself homeless, living out of her car as shelters could not prioritize single women over those with a family. She started taking financial classes to try to improve her situation and found HFLA along the way. HFLA’s $975 emergency loan helped Shainna move into a new apartment where she now works her new job remotely.


Who are the women that HFLA serves?

HFLA spent the better part of 2021 highlighting the need for women’s financial empowerment and building a community for women to talk about financial challenges and find resources. This series of virtual dialogues culminated in the screening of the documentary $avvy and subsequent panel discussion. HFLA used this virtual opportunity to highlight an issue we see in our lending and in our community as a whole, that women are the most financially at risk. Women make up 60% of all loans disbursed from HFLA in the past 5 years. The pandemic only exacerbated this disparity.

Of the unspoken financial obstacles that the $avvy Film Screening & Panel Discussion exposed was the revelation that millennial women abdicated financial responsibility at much higher rates than any other generation, and our loan numbers reflect that. While women ages 24-40 make up 45% of all loans disbursed in the past 5 years, women ages 25-34 make up the largest demographic group living in poverty in Ohio. 

We encourage you to continue conversations with the women in your lives about the importance of financial literacy and financial independence.

Learn more about the $avvy Film Screening & Panel Discussion: interestfree.org/events/savvy/

Hear what the HFLA staff has to say!

HFLA has been expanding and clarifying our loan offerings to give individuals more opportunities to take ownership of their financial lives and make progress towards their goals. We are creating new products and thinking up new ways of using existing loans to help people with what they need right now. — Brady Gasser, Program Director

I am looking forward to HFLA’s new loan products. It is nice to be a part of an organization that is always asking themselves ‘What do people need right now?’ instead of solely relying on what we’ve done in the past. — Leslie Wright, Program Coordinator

I am looking forward to seeing HFLA’s presence grow. As a Lorain County resident, I think HFLA is a great resource for people in my own community. — Emma Mobert, Intake Specialist

We have a great opportunity to think creatively amongst our staff and community partners and to imagine what is possible with our lending. Working together, we can continue to multiply the impact we have on the lives of borrower’s and the greater community. — Carrie Miller, Assistant Director

What is most exciting is the increase in staff and the knowledge and skills we bring to the table. We have an incredible opportunity as an organization to grow and evolve the way we do things in the future. — Hillary Butler, Development Manager

I’m excited about the new loan products and new ways of marketing existing loans. I look forward to seeing the new ways in which HFLA will continue to grow, adapt, and create in the future. — Monica Pacanins, Relationship Manager