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Dupaco seeks to boost lifetime incomes

On March 19, the Dubuque City Council approved an agreement with Dupaco Community Credit Union to develop a program to help people get better paying jobs.

Dupaco’s objective is to create small-dollar “life loans” up to $10,000 to allow people who work minimum wage jobs to cover the cost of living expenses and tuition through a partnership with Northeast Iowa Community College and other hands-on training programs.

The expected result is higher wages and lifetime incomes.

The agreement formalizes Dupaco’s involvement in the City of Dubuque’s Comprehensive Housing Activities for Neighborhood Growth & Enrichment (C.H.A.N.G.E.). The effort is part of a million-dollar grant application to underwrite the life loans. This product innovation is likely contingent upon winning grant funding and could be available in 2019.

If successful, Dupaco could replicate this model in the credit union’s other communities where similar partnership resources exist.

Dupaco is eligible to apply for this special grant funding because of its status as a U.S. Treasury-certified Community Development Financial Institution. CDFIs must have a proven and successful track record of serving low-income communities. Dupaco is one of nine CDFIs in Iowa.