On May 10, 2017, leaders of First Tennessee Bank were joined by John Hope Bryant, founder, chairman and CEO of Operation HOPE, and local elected officials, to celebrate the grand opening of the newest HOPE Inside location at First Tennessee Bank on Church St. in Murfreesboro. During the grand opening ceremony, Operation HOPE, Inc. and First Tennessee Bank received the ‘Key to the City’ from Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Part of a $1 million partnership between First Tennessee’s Financial Education & Empowerment Program and global financial dignity and economic empowerment nonprofit Operation HOPE, Inc., the location will provide free financial education to area residents and small businesses.
“We are grateful to First Tennessee for this significant investment that will help create stronger communities across Tennessee and the region,” Bryant said. “HOPE Inside provides the tools to create a more secure financial future. Individuals are coached on how to raise their credit score and move from renting to being a homeowner; how to get a job or create a small business and become a community builder; how to be smarter with the money they have – the kind of accomplishments that bring the American Dream within reach of anyone and transform whole communities.”
The first HOPE Inside at a First Tennessee financial center bank location opened in November 2014 in Memphis, and since the start of the bank’s partnership with Operation Hope, more than 5,200 people have benefitted from the program. Today’s opening is the 11th location, with four more planned to open by the end of the year.
The curriculum at HOPE Inside First Tennessee starts with participation in one of the free monthly credit and money management workshops, facilitated by First Tennessee’s employee volunteers, strategic nonprofit alliance partners and counselors. Once the workshop is completed, Operation HOPE financial wellbeing coaches work essentially as private bankers for the participants, who have committed to improving their credit scores. Participants are counseled on the language of money and work with their coach to help transform established financial mindsets, develop customized action plans and make better decisions with their money.
Three-hour workshops are held one Saturday morning each month at HOPE Inside locations. Anyone who has completed a workshop can schedule a private counseling session to get one-on-one advice and continue improving money management skills. The first workshop in Murfreesboro is slated for June 17. To enroll in Operation HOPE’s program, contact your local HOPE Inside office.