Cornerstone Bank offers financial literacy classes in Spanish for residents at the Hector Reyes House

Cornerstone Bank recently held a series of four financial literacy classes in Spanish for residents of the Hector Reyes House in Worcester. In addition to providing individualized residential substance abuse treatment, the House offers educational programs designed to help participants with independent living.

“We place tremendous importance on education and pride ourselves on our dedication to furthering the knowledge of our community,” said Todd Tallman, CEO of Cornerstone Bank. “We have continued to grow and expand our financial literacy classes, and this Spanish-language program is another step toward increasing access. We offered 114 programs in 2022 and 204 in 2023. Our goal in 2024 is to continue this growth, with a focus on underserved populations. We want to provide all the people in the communities we serve with the knowledge they need to make sound financial decisions.”

Cornerstone Bank employees Joel Laureano, assistant vice president, senior market manager; and Ivori Hidalgo Batista, human resource intern; conducted the classes in Spanish. Content included:

  • How to manage and balance a checking account
  • The importance of savings accounts and tips for saving
  • The difference between a cashier’s check and a money order
  • Understanding ATM cards, credit cards and debit cards
  • What “insufficient funds” means
  • How mobile banking works
  • How to fill out deposit and withdrawal slips, write a check and read a paycheck
  • What credit and a credit score are, why they are important and how to build credit
  • How to calculate debt to income ratio, what it means and why it’s important
  • Debt consolidation
  • How to identify red flags and tips to help avoid scams and fraud

After completing all four classes, participants were invited to open savings and checking accounts at Cornerstone Bank, even if they had been turned down in the past due to their financial history.