PERSONAL FINANCIAL FIRST AID
These are difficult financial times for many of us. We face uncertainty in our employment and housing, which adds stress to the many difficulties of managing our lives, and those of our families, during the pandemic. Financial health and mental health are closely linked and this page is designed to provide a range of resources to help you cope now, as well as find pathways to financial stability for the longer term..
Everyone’s financial life is different, complicated and private. However there is no stigma in taking a good long hard look at your financial life – you may find that making a plan, looking at your budget, seeking advice and looking squarely at your future needs, can help you feel resilient, empowered and even optimistic during a time of crisis. It is so important to ask for help.
We will update this page with new resources and information, so please check in.
Maximize Your Benefits
Pitkin County Economic Services, Aspen Family Connections, Catholic Charities and other organizations are here to help you navigate and access benefits, entitlements and other assistance to help get through hard times. Even if you’ve never sought any kind of public assistance, there is absolutely no stigma in doing so. It’s your right! Consider applying for unemployment, Medicaid, free/reduced lunches for your children, CCAP for your younger children, and food assistance – just to start with. We have great resources and Pitkin County Economic Services, and other providers can help you figure out what you are entitled to.
- Colorado PEAK is an excellent place to start to see if you are eligible
- Pitkin County Economic Services (for great local support and advice)
- Connect for Health Colorado (help for those needing health insurance)
- Mountain Family Health (help with all things Medicaid)
- Roaring Fork Family Resource Center (for families with children in the RE1 schools)
Budgeting and Planning
Even if you are late to the budgeting and planning game, it’s not too late to start. Taking long hard look at your finances may help you see where savings can be made.
Our 5-part series videos provides some straightforward advice and tools for dealing with some common challenges relating to budgeting, planning, saving and coping with debt, by local expert, Dr. Robert Blattberg
INTRODUCTION TO BUDGETING
NEEDS VERSUS WANTS
CASE STUDY – HOW THINGS WORK IN THE REAL WORLD
THE BUDGETING PROCESS
(advice, tips and apps for keeping your expenditure under control)
Manage Your Debt
Seek advice about how to consolidate and manage your debts for a debt-free future. It is important to be careful when choosing any financial adviser.
Find a Way to Save
When times are tough, it may seem unrealistic to save, but doing so, even in a small way, can be empowering.
For a great local savings option, app-based and very easy to participate in:
Other Supportive Resources
Your own bank is likely to have some online resources to help you get your financial health on track. We also like the following
- https://www.joinsmartpath.com/coronavirus (a good library of free webinars on a wide variety of topics, many with a specific emphasis on the impact of covid on your personal finances, co-parenting, job loss and many other topics
One way to help your money go a bit further is to use the food distributions and pantries in our Valley. There is no stigma associated with food distribution and all are welcome.
Pitkin County food distributions:
Crown Mountain Park (El Jebel), every Tuesday, 12.00 pm to 2.00 pm
Aspen Golf Course, every Wednesday, 12.00 pm to 2.00 pm
LiftUP food pantry
465 N Mill St #18, Aspen, CO 81611
Tuesday-Saturday, 11.00–5.20 By appointment:
call 970-544 2009 or sign up online
Financial Health and Mental Health
Don’t forget that financial health is closely related to mental health. If at any time you feel overwhelmed, please seek help.
- Mind Springs Health (for connection to therapists and affordable mental health care, as well as many online resources)
- Aspen Strong (resources and connections)
- The Aspen Hope Center