IMPACT Community Action
Exceptional Service is Key to a Successful Partnership
IMPACT Community Action’s mission is “to reduce poverty by providing hope-inspiring help and real opportunities for self-sufficiency.” Each year, IMPACT serves more than 20,000 families and individuals in Columbus and Franklin County who are at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level.
As part of their youth empowerment services, IMPACT provides paid work experience opportunities to youth in Franklin County. Over the years, the in-school (ages 14-18) and out-of-school (ages 16-24) programs have grown to a capacity of more than 200 individuals.
While the program has been very successful, an unfortunate side effect was that the added administrative burden shifted focus away from mission-oriented activities. As the program expanded, it became increasingly difficult for the fiscal department to efficiently administer payroll and effectively maintain records. Accurate records are particularly important for IMPACT since programs are funded by outside agencies who require extensive reporting and perform regular audits.
We provided support for all three phases of their youth program, including:
- Staff orientation and training
- Worksite validation
- Budget assistance
- On-boarding program participants
- Collect/validate required paperwork
- Youth work permit management
- Payroll administration -Program compliance tracking/reporting
Post Program Activity
- Reports for audit use
- Unclaimed funds follow up/reports
- Off-boarding program participants
- Program debrief
I love that UpRys is multi-faceted. As the program grows, UpRys takes on more responsibility and assists us with program development and promotion. This allows us to remain focused on our mission and continue moving IMPACT forward. We definitely value the relationship with UpRys as well as the services they provide.
-Cassandra Fletcher, Program Manager
The IMPACT/UpRys partnership began 5 years ago. Over the years the partnership has evolved and become stronger.
“As our program has expanded, UpRys has always gone above and beyond to meet our needs” said Cassandra Fletcher, IMPACT Program Manager. In addition to the day-to-day activities, the partners meet monthly to provide status updates, evaluate processes and uncover any additional needs. Interaction with UpRys is not limited to these meetings, however. “We work very closely with Tracy Stearns, UpRys, Vice President Workforce Solutions and the rest of the UpRys team” said Fletcher. “We appreciate being able to contact Tracy if an issue comes up and know she will take care of it right away. She stays in constant communication with us and has exceeded our expectations.”
As part of the youth empowerment services, IMPACT provides work experience opportunities to foster youth in Franklin County. “A payroll situation arose with these individuals and UpRys implemented a unique solution to ensure foster youth were paid timely and securely” said Fletcher.
Per Franklin County Children’s Services, foster youth are not permitted to have their own bank account. Therefore, cash cards are the preferred method used to issue paychecks. However, it quickly became clear that providing them with an instant issue cash card with no name and mailing the permanent card was not going to work.
According to Fletcher, since foster youth move from placement to placement, there is no guarantee they will be at the same address when the permanent card arrives—making them easily intercepted or stolen. UpRys worked with the cash card provider to have the permanent cards mailed to UpRys allowing IMPACT to hand cards directly to each individual. “Without the creative thinking and hard work of the UpRys team, this would not have been possible,” said Fletcher.