Keith and Robin Brown earned a good living, owned a nice house in Goose Creek and raised their three teenage daughters. That's when the trouble began.
Keith's job as a civilian contractor at the Naval Weapons Station got cut. He took another job at half pay at Protective Vehicles Inc., but they went out of business. He never got his last paycheck.
Once the Browns got behind in their mortgage the financial woes snowballed. Soon they owed mortgage, plus interest, plus interest on the interest. One day he came home to an auction sign in front of his house. Keith was advised to file bankruptcy. He thought that solved the problem. No one told him that wouldn't protect his house.
Finally, the family connected with Family Services' financial literacy and housing programs. "If it weren't for them, we'd probably be homeless," says Keith. Family Services helped them negotiate a payment plan that worked for the lender and kept the Browns in their home.
Trident United Way invests nearly $200,000 in these programs because they really help hard-working people like the Browns. Last year, all of the financially-strapped families who entered the financial literacy program got up-to-date on their rent or mortgage. This year, the need for those services has increased 50%.
For the Browns, help couldn't have come at a better time. Two of their daughters have entered college and the third one is headed there soon.