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					Consumer Credit
Counseling Service




                     Annual Report 2008
OUR MissiOn             Helping people improve their
financial well-being through counseling, community
outreach and financial education




                                   Know the Difference
                                                     Quality and Credibility

                                                            Non-profit 501(c)(3)

                                                                    Experienced
                                       Helping families and individuals since 1955


                                                                 Comprehensive
                            Providing financial counseling and education programs

                                                 Working in Your Best Interest
                 Identifying your options and developing a personalized action plan

                                                Accreditations and Affiliations
                               Letter from our President
                    2008 was the most challenging year in many decades. The economic
                    downturn evolved into an avalanche, forcing many individuals and families
                    to face the harsh realities of job loss, loan delinquencies, and foreclosure.
                    Our agency responded quickly by increasing counseling services,
                    developing focused financial education programs and doubling collaborative
                    efforts with local, regional and national partners to address these pressing
                    concerns.

                    The past two years have been difficult ones for many individuals and
                    families, and I am proud that we have been able to help so many
                    understand their financial situation and develop a plan of action to resolve
Michael S. Kappas   their issues. Realizing the success and effectiveness of our programs and
President & CEO     services, we felt it was time to expand and offer them across the country.
                    As a result, in 2008, we began the necessary steps to be able to provide
                    our services on a national level.

                    This brought about the need for a new name that would link not only our
                    CCCS offices in our local communities, but also the services provided
                    by phone or Internet across the country. Much thought was put into the
                    process of choosing a new national name. After a great deal of deliberation
                    on our history, the core of what we do now and what we hope to do in the
                    future, we selected Apprisen Financial Advocates.

                    Looking ahead, along with the debut of our new name, we plan on
                    introducing a complement of new products and services that will provide
                    additional assistance to the thousands of people we serve each year. We
                    recognize that individuals today expect convenience and solid solutions
                    through alternative delivery systems. We believe that we have developed
                    the necessary tools to assist us in providing new services well into the future
                    as the world we live in continues to evolve.

                    With all of this change — in our name and enhanced technology — we
                    will always deliver the professional quality of service that you have grown
                    accustomed to receiving from us. Our solid commitment to those that
                    we serve will continue to be the centerpiece of our operations.

                    Thanks to all of you for your continued support and commitment to our
                    organization.
Since our founding in 1955, our name has changed to           for a national name that would link our growing family
reflect the agency’s growth in its ability to serve greater   of services, provided in local offices as well as by
numbers of people. In our 53 year history, we have            phone and Internet, under one national identity. We
helped over a half million individuals and families learn     sought a name that would represent the spirit of what
to manage money, balance their budgets and get out            we do now and what we have the capacity to do in
of debt.                                                      the future.

•	 Beginning in 1955, as Economy Budget                       Apprisen Financial Advocates is derived from two
   Counseling, we helped over 6,200 people.                   important words whose definitions clearly describe the
                                                              work that our agency performs to fulfill its mission.
•	 in 1967, we became Consumer Credit
   Counseling service of Greater Columbus and                 Apprise (uh-priz’): verb – to inform, to instruct,
   counseled 12,000 additional families and                   to enlighten
   individuals.
                                                              Advocate (ad’-veh-kit): noun – one who speaks
•	 Expanding into other areas of Ohio in 1981, as             or acts in support of another; one who counsels,
   Consumer Credit Counseling service of Central              encourages, or champions
   Ohio, we counseled another 162,000 people.
                                                              Beginning June 2009, while we will still identify
•	 in 2000, with offices located in several states,           ourselves as Consumer Credit Counseling Service in
   we became Consumer Credit Counseling                       the local communities we serve, the Apprisen name
   service of the Midwest, helping another 356,000            and symbol will unify all of the programs we offer.
   clients address their money management
   concerns.                                                  We are still the same agency; the quality of our staff
                                                              and services remain the same. Most importantly, we
Our quality of service has led, in recent years, to           believe we’ve strengthened our ability to fulfill our
unprecedented growth, expansion into new markets              mission: helping people improve their financial well-
and development of innovative delivery methods.               being through counseling, community outreach and
Following our tradition, in 2008, we began the search         financial education.




     In our 53 year history, we have helped over a half million individuals
     and families learn to manage money, balance their budgets and
     get out of debt.
                                              2008 Accomplishments
Counseling and Operations                             •	 Awarded major federal, state and local funding
•	 Increased the number of counseling sessions           in support of our housing counseling efforts
   by 8.1%                                            •	 Increased default and delinquency housing
•	 Opened 4 additional counseling offices                counseling sessions by 32%
   and acquired CCCS programs in Lima and
   Ashtabula, Ohio                                    Community Outreach and Education
•	 Expanded to the West Coast with the merger         •	 Increased financial education sessions by 21%
   of Consumer Counseling Northwest in western        •	 Increased number of people attending sessions
   Washington                                            by 12%
•	 Received an average of 30,500 calls per month      •	 Increased media interviews by 59%
   in our Customer Service Center
                                                      Debt Management Program
Housing Counseling                                    •	 Increased the number of active clients at year
•	 Opened Housing Help Center to provide                 end by 7%
   critically needed foreclosure prevention           •	 Increased distribution to creditors by 10% to
   counseling in some of the hardest hit                 $135,949,983, setting new record
   communities                                        •	 Achieved benchmark of over 90% of clients
•	 Achieved NCHEC (NeighborWorks Center for              maintaining payments each month
   Homeownership Education and Counseling)            •	 Achieved benchmark of 56% of closed clients
   certification by Housing Help Center counselors       successfully completing the program by paying
   in foreclosure intervention and default               creditors in full or taking payments over on their
   counseling                                            own




             STATES WITH CCCS OFFICES          OTHER STATES WHERE CCCS IS AUTHORIZED TO PROVIDE SERVICE
APPRISE To inform, instruct, enlighten
Impacting Greater Numbers of People Through Strategic Partnerships
Building relationships continues to be a significant part of our outreach efforts. As part of the CCCS
Partners Program, a structured “calling” program to identify existing personal finance needs, we held
over 1,300 meetings in 2008 with financial institutions, businesses, employers and other non-profits.

During 2008, we talked with employers experiencing major layoffs and community organizations
seeing greater numbers of people in economic distress. They told us almost in unison that “CCCS has
the skills to provide much needed financial literacy information so we can prevent what has happened from
happening again. CCCS has a significant role to play in preparing consumers to get themselves back on
their feet through wise use of credit.”



     “Our staff is also grateful as they now can direct people
      to a path that will help them better their financial lives.”
                              – Mary Rhodes, CommunityAmerica Credit Union


Credit Restore Educational Program
Kansas City, MO - Just like Consumer Credit                people completing the program. “Clients are grateful
Counseling Service (CCCS), CommunityAmerica Credit         because they are learning how to improve their credit
Union in Kansas City is committed to the markets they      and are given a second chance. They really appreciate
serve. In the last few years, CommunityAmerica began       someone reaching out to them. Our staff is also
to see more and more people being declined for loans       grateful as they now can direct people to a path that
or new accounts.                                           will help them better their financial lives,” Mary stated.

“We’re in this for the long term, and we felt committed    “This is a great example of how two organizations
to try and serve this market,” said Mary Rhodes,           can work together, each providing their services and
Director of Deposit Services at CommunityAmerica           expertise to help people get ahead,” said Bill Staler,
Credit Union. “We didn’t just want to turn them away.”     Vice President and National Community Outreach
                                                           Director for CCCS. “Given our present economic
CommunityAmerica contacted Jana Castanon, CCCS             climate, these types of collaborations will increase
Community Outreach Director, to discuss ways to            as more and more people need help.”
help those with low credit scores re-enter the financial
services system. Jana developed the Credit Restore
program, a two-hour class designed to help people
                                                                                                           31,304
learn basic financial and banking skills. “We designed                        1251
the course with a focus on helping people develop
                                                                                                  28,016                        317
a financial plan,” said Jana. “We demonstrate that                    1038
getting back on track financially is a journey made up         928                       25,457                         227
of many small steps.”

Those who successfully complete the class are given
a certificate which allows them to open an account or
apply for a loan at CommunityAmerica. Once they are            2006    2007   2008        2006    2007     2008         2006   2007
re-established, CommunityAmerica works with them to
                                                               Workshops / Seminars       People Attending              Media Intervie
set goals that will help them reach financial success.
The partnership is working well with more than 550
Reclaim the Dream Media Project
Akron, OH - Editors at the Beacon Journal said that         the journalists with advice, but CCCS staff members in
CCCS’s involvement was critical to the success of a         Northeast Ohio also provided considerable resources
year-long public-service project covering the economic      to counsel families who volunteered for financial
challenges facing the community.                            makeovers in the paper.”

Reporters and editors had become overwhelmed with            “The Reclaim the Dream
the gravity of what they were finding in their research,     project developed by
which began with data analysis and focus groups.             the Akron Beacon                                      503
                                                                                      31,304
They had detected high levels of anxiety, if not fear, as 1251
                                                             Journal was an
many once-solid middle class families struggled with         excellent example of
                                                                             28,016                       317
job losses, loss of health care, overwhelming debt1038       how a newspaper
and, in some cases, bankruptcy.           928                can report and serve
                                                                    25,457                        227
                                                             the community
As they wrote their monthly installments to the series,      simultaneously,” said
The American Dream: Hanging by a Thread, they                Jay Seaton, CCCS
decided that they should launch a tandem series that         Area President of
offered solutions.                        2006 2007 2008     Northeastern Ohio. 2008
                                                                    2006 2007                     2006 2007 2008
                                                             “Our CCCS counseling
                                          Workshops / Seminars      People Attending              Media Interviews
The newspaper’s consumer writer invited                      team and the ‘money
representatives of the Northeast Ohio CCCS office to         coaching’ sessions they
meet with the reporters and editors who were working         provided helped the
on the project to brainstorm. “It was CCCS’s practical       CCCS community education mission come alive for
knowledge of the problems and solutions that made            Akron Beacon Journal readers.” In addition, CCCS
the next phase of the project, Reclaim the Dream,            was actively involved in planning a free community
so easy to focus and make so practical for readers,”         financial fair at the city’s convention center that
Doug Oplinger, Managing Editor for the Akron Beacon          resulted in an attendance of over 1,000 area residents.
Journal pointed out. “And not only did CCCS provide




      Our community partners tell us that CCCS has a significant role
      to play in preparing consumers to get themselves back on their
                                      feet through wise use of credit.


Outcomes and Impact
The Financial Education and Outreach Program reaches a diverse population of predominantly low-to-moderate
income individuals and families. Of those attending classes, 79 percent earn less than $50,000 per year; 59
percent, less than $35,000. The data indicates that 42 percent are African American, 52 percent are Caucasian,
and 6 percent represent other races or ethnicities. Thirty-two percent are under the age of 30; 45 percent,
between 30 and 50 years of age; and 23 percent, over 50.

We have a carefully crafted, proactive structure of financial education that includes measurement and evaluation
mechanisms. Survey results indicate that 97% of attendees rate workshops as Very Good or Good; 96% are
confident in their ability to apply what they learned to their everyday lives to avoid problems in the future.
ADvOCATE To counsel, encourage, champion
Helping Families and Individuals Develop a Personalized Plan of Action
The hallmark of our services is the free, confidential,     “Our counseling services are perfect examples of
one-on-one session with a certified counselor that          the concepts behind our new national name,” said
helps people address their financial situation and          Johnny Cantrell, Chief Operating Officer. “We advise
develop a personalized action plan. In addition,            and educate our clients and then advocate on their
we provide HUD-approved housing counseling                  behalf with their creditors. I strongly feel that the
and are approved by the Executive Office of the             quality and scope of our counseling has played
U.S. Trustees to provide the required bankruptcy            a major role in our dramatic growth over the last
counseling and education sessions.                          several years.”




   “Well, we were living on credit cards. I just didn’t realize it. We
   were making minimum payments on 25 credit cards and loans.”
                                                                         – Don, CCCS client


Guiding Families Back On Track
Don - Cincinnati, OH Shortly after leaving the              place the payment plan that would help him pay
military, Don’s financial life began to fall apart. There   down the debt on his 25 credit accounts.
were so many catastrophes during the trip back
home to Ohio that he overused his credit cards.             There would be little cushion in his budget, but
It was devastating when one of the credit card              Don was adamant that he’d do whatever it took
companies raised his interest rate to 29%. It was a         to make a debt management program work. His
catastrophe, though, when that company bought               plan involved more than just sending in a monthly
three of Don’s other cards and raised the interest          payment. Priority one for the program: his adult son
rates on those as well. Couple those increases              would have to assume his own car payments as
with a jump in minimum payments from 2% to 4%               soon as he landed a job. Don’s tax refund would
and suddenly this defender of our country felt he           pay off a 90-day “same-as-cash” loan before the
couldn’t hold his financial life together. It was a         90 days expired. Don was approaching this major
perfect storm creating a real credit crisis for Don         financial challenge with a “can do” attitude.
and his family.
                                                            Three years later, Don has paid down most of his
In retrospect, Don says, “Well, we were living on           debt. With only 13 months to go, his job is still
credit cards. I just didn’t realize it. We were making      secure and he’s ecstatic about his financial picture
minimum payments on 25 credit cards and loans.              going forward. His family has expanded — He’s
We could handle it as long as nothing unexpected            added a grandchild to the family and says life is
happened, but then all of a sudden all kinds of             really good. “I’m looking forward to being totally
unexpected things occurred.”                                debt free. I’ll definitely be smarter about how I use
                                                            credit in the future!”
Shortly after arriving in Cincinnati, Don, now secure
in a new job, met with a CCCS counselor. After              Like most CCCS clients, Don’s Debt Management
a thorough review of his budget of expenses and             Program brought him peace of mind, a new way of
income, the CCCS Debt Management Program                    thinking about money and enabled him to control
seemed an appropriate option for stabilizing his            his life rather than just reacting to it.
finances. We worked with his creditors to set in
Total Comprehensive Financial Counseling Sessions: 55,262

                                                            Housing Counseling
                                                            2008 saw a tremendous growth in the number
                                     55,262                 of people calling for appointments with housing
                                                            concerns. A HUD certified housing counseling agency
                                                            for many years, CCCS decided it needed to expand its
                      51,143                                housing counseling when the foreclosure crisis hit
                                                            a peak during the third quarter of 2007.

        42,698                                              The Housing Help Center opened in March 2008 as
                                                            a direct result of home foreclosures increasing in the
                                                            markets we serve. The purpose of the new unit is to
                                                            focus on the most severe mortgage problems, helping
                                                            homeowners work with their mortgage companies to
        2006           2007           2008                  find solutions to their financial crises.

        Growth in Counseling Sessions                       In 2008, the Housing Help Center counseled 593
                                                            homeowners who were facing potential mortgage
                                                            foreclosures. We were able to save over half of those
                                                            homes from foreclosure by working with the mortgage
Debt Management Program                                     companies to modify the terms and conditions of their
The agency ended 2008 with 21,773 clients paying            loans.
down debt through the program.
                                                            Housing Counseling Sessions: 15,582
We distributed almost $136 million back to creditors
on our clients’ behalf.                                     Default – Foreclosure Prevention:       10,876
                                                            Reverse Mortgage Counseling:               841
56% of closed clients successfully paid all debts in full   Pre-purchase Housing Counseling:         1,457
or were able to take over payments on their own.
                                                            Rental Counseling:                       1,009
Average Client Profile                                      Other:                                   1,399

Gross Annual Income:                      $44,500           Bankruptcy Pre-filing
Total Unsecured Debt:                     $22,720           Counseling Sessions: 8,225
Household Size:                           2.5
Number of Creditors:                      7
Age:                                      46
Female:                                   64%
Male:                                     36%
2008 leAdership contributors
AT&T                                   Fifth Third Bank                        U.S. Bank
Bank of America                        Forest City Charitable Foundation       U.S. Department of Housing &
Boone County National Bank             Home Savings & Loan                       Urban Development (HUD)
JPMorgan Chase                         Huntington National Bank                United Way of Central Ohio
Citi                                   Mercantil Commercebank                  United Way of Miami – Dade
Cortland Bank                          National City Bank                      Verizon
Cuyahoga County                        Nationwide Foundation                   Washington Mutual
Dollar Bank                            Ohio National Financial Services        Wean Foundation
Dominion East Ohio Gas                 Ohio National Foundation                WesBanco Bank
Duke Energy                            PNC Bank
Farmers National Bank                  Spirit of America National Bank




2008 FinAnciAls
CCCS seeks diversity in its funding sources in order to build a strong financial base. These include
contributions from creditors, modest client fees, and grants from community foundations, financial
institutions, businesses and other partners.




2008 revenue
  Creditor Contributions           51.5%
                                               0.04%
                                                         18.8%
                                                                   29.3%
  Client Fees                      29.3%
  Grants, Contracts and
  Community Contributions
  Investments and
                                   18.8%
                                                               51.5%
  Miscellaneous Income              00.4%




2008 expenses                                         14.3%
  Programs and Services            85.7%
  Administrative Expenses          14.3%                       85.7%
2008 boArd oF directors
Jay E. MichaEl Acting Chairman                paula a. EdWards noicE
Attorney (Columbus, OH)                       Retired, Nationwide Federal Credit Union
                                              (Estero, FL)
MorEEn BailEy FratEr
WEWS NewsChannel 5 (Cleveland, OH)            FrEdErick h. hEysE
                                              Retired, Procter and Gamble (Cincinnati, OH)
thoMas W. BakEr
Baker Communications (Lexington, KY)          JanEt shaW
                                              Ohio Psychiatric Physicians Association
richard c. BEltEr                             (Columbus, OH)
American Signature, Inc. (Columbus, OH)
                                              david h. WEiss
ray caMpBEll ii                               Better Business Bureau (Cleveland, OH)
KEMBA Financial Credit Union (Columbus, OH)
                                              phillip l. youngs
                                              UMB Bank (Kansas City, MO)



senior stAFF
MichaEl s. kappas, President/CEO              charlEs hElMs
                                              Director, Housing and National Fundraising
Johnny cantrEll, Senior Vice President
Chief Operating Officer                       dEBBiE JonEs, Asst. Vice President
                                              Branch Operations
JaMEs h. ZEiEr, Senior Vice President
Chief Financial Officer                       sharon MillEr, Asst. Vice President
                                              Quality Assurance
WilliaM stalEr, Vice President
                                              rEnEE J. ruhl, Asst. Vice President
craig BoltE                                   Client Operations
Director, Information Systems
                                              Jay sEaton, Area President
richard call, Vice President                  Northeastern Ohio
Housing and Bankruptcy Counseling
                                              Frank schEck, Asst. Vice President
conniE dElong, Asst. Vice President           Branch Operations
Client Accounting
                                              kathy virgallito
Maria douthitt                                Community and Business Development Director
Comptroller

BrEnda haMMond
Director, Human Resources
CompreHenSive finanCial CounSeling and eduCation

          in-perSon, pHone or internet


              www.apprisen.com
              1-800-355-2227

           CounSeling alSo availaBle at
            Convenient loCal offiCeS in


                        oHio

                      florida
                      indiana

                       KanSaS
                     KentuCKy

                      miSSouri

                      oregon

                   pennSylvania

                     tenneSSee

                    WaSHington




                 Corporate offiCe
       4500 e. Broad Street, Columbus, oH 43213

				
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