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Office of Community and Economic Development

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MEDA Annual VIVA Summit


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OCED staff was invited by the Mission Economic Development Agency (MEDA) in San Francisco to be presenters in their Annual VIVA Summit.  OCED Executive Director Ismael Herrera and San Joaquin Valley Rural Development Center Director Eduardo Gonzalez participated in MEDA’s Financial Capability Annual VIVA Summit 2019 held in San Francisco, California. OCED staff were presenters in the Family Wealth Track of the Annual VIVA Summit and shared how to best integrate Financial Capability into Existing Programs. Topics include; the importance of Financial Capability, challenges of integration, best practices, and the process of integration financial capability into Fresno State’s Parent University programming.

Ismael and Eduardo both shared that the value of integrated Financial Capability education and coaching is being recognized nationally. Since 2018, OCED has partnered with MEDA and the Madera Workforce Development Board to provide this integrated model training, capacity building, technical assistance and financial capability coaching throughout its affiliate networks and clients. MEDA’s model, now branded, VIVA!, was recognized as a “best practice” at the national Workforce conference the prior year. OCED has now formalized Financial Capability as a key piece of its Fresno State Parent University service delivery and expects to expand the program to the 8 county San Joaquin Valley region.

Eduardo explained in his presentation that the current project that OCED, MEDA, and the Madera Workforce Development Board are involved will help “move the needle” by effectively engaging job seekers with integrated financial capability services (financial literacy) that will fast track, increase, and sustain their economic progress. These integrated financial capability services will remove barriers to employment, career pathways, and long-term asset building, such as education, savings, and homeownership.

If you are interested in learning more about the Fresno State Parent University program and the newly integrated financial capability services please contact OCED at 559.278.0542.