Immigrants And Refugees
Immigrants and Refugees

Transforming Lives with Financial Literacy: A Volunteer’s Inspiring Path at Catholic Charities

Jorge Solorzano Catholic Charities Volunteer
Jorge Solorzano, Catholic Charities Volunteer. Photo Credit: Catholic Charities NY

In 2017, Jorge Solorzano embarked on a journey from Guatemala to the United States, driven by a desire to make a difference in the lives of fellow immigrants. Armed with a wealth of knowledge gained from a successful career in banking, Jorge found his calling with Catholic Charities’ Eviction Prevention Program. With expertise in financial literacy, he now dedicates his time to teaching budgeting classes to clients in the program, with a focus on promoting financial security and health.

Reflecting on his work, Solorzano expressed, “I like the fact that I work with Catholic Charities. They provide a lot of services that can help prevent financial crisis situations.”

With a professional background spanning seven years in banking and two decades in financial planning, asset management, and trust management, he was well-equipped to empower others on their financial journeys.

Jorge’s role in the program involves conducting virtual budgeting classes twice a month, engaging 8-15 participants in each workshop. The lessons cover a range of topics, including prioritizing expenses, overcoming debt and financial crises, understanding the origin of personal debt, staying within a budget, and building a balanced budget while managing expenses effectively.

There is so much competition in the world and I want to prepare others for success. Knowledge is power.

For Jorge, the most enjoyable aspect of his volunteer work is witnessing the positive impact on individuals’ lives. He cherishes the moments when participants grasp the principles of financial literacy and apply them to enhance their lives. Despite being the teacher, Jorge acknowledges the reciprocal nature of the learning experience, where both teacher and student benefit. “I find joy in witnessing the success of my students. Some of them are even older than me, but in the classroom, we all stand as equals, supporting and assisting one another,” said Jorge.

Jorge dreams of fostering financial knowledge among Latinos, envisioning a future where they are well-prepared for success in a competitive world. His commitment to empowering others through financial literacy is driven by a desire to contribute to the greater cultural community.

Don’t think about volunteering, just jump in. The satisfaction and rewards are worth it.

Jorge’s continued commitment to volunteering stems from the recognition of the crucial need for financial education. Working with Catholic Charities, he appreciates the array of services available to prevent financial crises. His motivation lies in contributing to a field that makes a tangible difference in people’s lives.

While retired, Jorge remains active in financial counseling, collaborating with a friend at a university in Guatemala. He believes that “knowledge is power,” a sentiment he imparts to his students. He extends his impact beyond borders by conducting virtual classes for students in his home country. Additionally, he offers guidance by reviewing financial paperwork for colleagues and providing advisement.

Jorge’s advice for those contemplating volunteering with Catholic Charities is simple yet profound: “Don’t think about it, just jump in. The satisfaction and rewards are worth it.”

Become a volunteer with Catholic Charities and make a positive difference in your local community.