In June 2018, a 34-year-old Zimbabwean man arrived in Dallas, Texas with his wife and three children. Today, he and his wife work full time, all of their children attend school, and the family has purchased their own car.

After fleeing persecution in Zimbabwe and being displaced for over a year, Rodrick and his family applied for resettlement the United States through UNHCR, and were resettled by the IRC in Dallas.

Determined to provide for his family, Roderick began working closely with the Economic Empowerment programs offered at the IRC in Dallas. Soon, Rodrick started a job as a caregiver. Thrilled to be employed, he began working, earning $10 per hour.

Rodrick in front of the family car after a day of work.
Photo: Melanie Crecy/the IRC

With a family to provide for, a lifestyle with wages at this level was proving difficult to maintain. His wife, who also works, and he were struggling to navigate and plan travel to and from their respective employers. Roderick had no credit history, and the family felt they had limited options. Rodrick began working with the Financial Opportunity Center (FOC) at the IRC in Dallas, and IRC staff helped him determine a budget for potential car payments and set realistic and smart goals to make reliable transportation a reality.

The IRC Center for Economic Opportunity (CEO) helps clients establish credit through small, low-interest loans.  Roderick was enrolled in classes on Building Credit and Car Buying. After completing both trainings, IRC staff walked him through the application for a car loan to fit his budget and needs.

He was approved!

Rodrick and his family now have reliable transportation that he uses to get back and forth to work and to transport his children safely to and from school, without recurring maintenance issues.

To contribute to the continued financial success of refugees in Dallas, donate now.

To learn more about the Center for Economic Opportunity (CEO) click here