Elizabeth Daigneau is GOVERNING's managing editor.E-mail: email@example.com
As foreclosures continue to rise, so does credit card debt and bankruptcies. A new volunteer initiative seeks to help those hurting from the current economic crisis.
Since 2007, the foreclosure rate in Pennsylvania has jumped 127 percent, and in the first quarter of 2009, nearly 115,000 Pennsylvania homeowners were delinquent with their mortgages. A new volunteer initiative, Get Help Now, Pennsylvania, wants to help those Pennsylvanians hurting from the current economic crisis by providing free legal and financial advice. Lawyers, banking and mortgage professionals, and financial analysts will work help desks in county bar association offices across the state to assist those facing foreclosure, mounting credit card debt and bankruptcy. Under the program, volunteers will be available from 1 to 6 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursday beginning July 7 and ending Sept. 11 with a National Day of Service and Remembrance. The initiative is in response to President and First Lady Obama's request that governors, organizations and individuals design a service initiative in their community to help their constituents. Get Help Now PA is a collaborative effort between the Office of the First Lady, the state Department of Banking, the Pennsylvania Bar Association, the Pennsylvania Bankers Association, the Mortgage Bankers Association of Pennsylvania and others.