Thursday, January 20, 2011

DelCoAD Launches Free Tax Service Throughout County


Delaware County, PA – At a time when many working families and individuals are struggling to pay their bills, there is a strong need for effective strategies to help these families meet their financial goals. While many working families are eligible for tax refunds through the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and other tax credits, many are unaware they are eligible for refunds or receive a reduced refund through filing with commercial preparers.

Today, Delaware County Asset Development Group, a member of the National Community Tax Coalition, is proud to announce the launch of free tax preparation services as a celebration of the national EITC Awareness Day on Friday, January 28th 1:30pm at their premiere site, Chester Housing Authority’s Booker T. Washington Community Center, 611 Central Avenue in Chester. DelCoAD, sponsored by Philadelphia Higher Education Network for Neighborhood Development (PHENND) and the United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania, is a coalition of agencies, educational and financial institutions dedicated to building the financial health and stability of individuals and families in Delaware County.

Through the IRS-sponsored Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program, volunteers electronically file federal and state tax returns, helping low wage workers access the Earned Income Tax Credit of up to $5,666, making it one of the largest and most effective anti-poverty tools in the United States.

“This wonderful opportunity will enable DelCoAD partner organizations to spread the word about the benefits of free tax preparation,” said Georgia Julius, VITA Coordinator. “We are excited about this celebration as we launch our free tax program in 2011.”

The Philadelphia area is among the nation’s leaders in low-income population. This year, DelCoAD partners, including fiscal sponsor PathWays PA, Community Action Agency of Delaware County, Darby Borough Community Development Corporation, Delaware County Family Centers and Chester Housing Authority will provide free tax preparation and other financial services at nine sites in Chester and the surrounding county. PathWays PA also runs a mobile tax preparation service, organizing temporary sites at places of employment and other centralized locations throughout Delaware County. The combined efforts of DelCoAD partner organizations will reach over 2,000 low-income working families to build economic security in our most vulnerable communities.

Those wishing to attend should RSVP online or by calling Georgia Julius at 610-543-5022. You can see a comprehensive list of sites and hours at www.delcoad.org.
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About DelCoAD:
DelCoAD, founded in 2002, is a coalition of agencies, educational, and financial institutions dedicated to building the financial health and stability of individuals and families in Delaware County, Pennsylvania. Partners provide free income tax preparation as a component of a year-round campaign, linking individuals and families to asset-building resources.

Each year, DelCoAD has increased the scope of our VITA program, bringing in new partners and locations to expand VITA reach and help EITC-eligible filers access their full tax refunds. This past filing season, our partners prepared more than1,800 tax returns, returning 2.7 million in federal refunds to the individuals and families most in need. Additional information can be found at www.delcoad.org.

About PathWays PA: PathWays PA, founded in 1978, has a consistently strong record of outreach and service to low income, underserved populations. Throughout its history, PathWays PA has provided low income populations of Southeastern PA with access to benefits, counseling, job training, and asset building strategies. All of PathWays PA's diverse programs and initiatives are designed to aid low income, underserved, and at-risk populations. We are committed to promoting client self-sufficiency which leads to the fulfillment of our mission: to help women, teens, children and families achieve economic independence and family well-being.

About PHENND: The Philadelphia Higher Education Network for Neighborhood Development (PHENND) is a consortium of 36 colleges and universities in the greater Philadelphia area. PHENND works to build the capacity of its member institutions to develop mutually beneficial, sustained, and democratic community-based service-learning partnerships. The consortium actively seeks to revitalize local communities and schools and foster civic responsibility among the region's colleges and universities.

About UWSEPA: The mission of the United Way of Southeastern Pennsylvania is to improve people’s lives by mobilizing the caring power of donors, volunteers and communities. We are committed to treating entire communities, providing the tools, services, and expertise that can enable those communities to become stronger and more independent.

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