Free program provides financial security in retirement

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- We all want to feel our money is secure and for older Mid-Southerners living on fixed incomes, it's even more important.

WREG met with a group of ladies retired from their careers but still working. They don't get paid for the work they do. Yet, it's all about the money. They are part of the RISE Foundation's Silver Neighbors Program.

"Often seniors are thought to be set in life. They've got a pension or a social security or some form of steady income but just with one wrong decision or one wrong move they can lose everything," said Linda Williams, RISE, President and CEO.

RISE, which stands for Responsibility, Initiative, Solutions, and Empowerment, sponsors learning circles at area community centers, churches and other places seniors gather. Lucille Pratcher heard about it through a church member. She's now working to become a program ambassador after a phone solicitor charged $500 to her 86-year-old sister's credit card.

"They ended up charging her credit card account for some magazines which she did not want," said Pratcher.

Financial fraud targeted toward seniors is the most common kind of elder abuse. As soon as authorities catch one scam, another one pops up. Silver Neighbors works to shut down the swindlers before they get a chance to strike.

Funeral service purchase, life insurance, medical billing and debt, Medicare open enrollment and reverse mortgages are just a few of the topics discussed during Silver Neighbor learning circles.

Pratcher said, "I think the RISE Foundation is trying to empower, trying to give them information to alert, to make them aware."

Silver Neighbors is just one of the programs sponsored by RISE to help promote financial literacy among families in the

"I've often said it's not just increasing the incomes of families that truly will make a difference, it's helping people manage what they already have," Williams said.

RISE also raises awareness and money to support its programs through the RISE gala, "An Evening of Change." The event is Friday night, September 30th, and WREG is a proud sponsor.

For more information on the event click here