CCCS Launches New, FREE Student Loan Counseling Program; Joins the Education Debt Consumer Assistance Program (EDCAP) Network
Will Help Local Borrowers Access Loan Forgiveness & Navigate Complex Student Loan Repayment System
Shortly after the federal government kicked off their student loan forgiveness application process, Consumer Credit Counseling Service (CCCS) announced their newly redesigned, cost free Student Loan Counseling Program to assist local borrowers. While the government’s process is meant to be simple, the complexities of student loans often cause uncertainty, anxiety and frustration.
For the past ten years, CCCS has operated the only Student Loan Counseling Program in Western New York, helping thousands of besieged borrowers tackle what many felt was insurmountable debt. Student loan repayment has long been an obstacle for a significant percentage of the population, particularly for younger people. 45% of 18-35 year olds currently have student loan debt in New York State. Right now, 2.4 million New York State residents have outstanding loans; a total cumulative debt of over $90 billion.
In October, the Education Debt Consumer Assistance Program (EDCAP) invited CCCS to join their statewide network after the New York State Legislature increased their funding specifically designated for New York State residents with higher education debt. EDCAP–a program of the Community Service Society of New York (CSS)—and CSS work to make New York State more livable for people facing economic insecurity. CSS created EDCAP as an initiative to help New Yorkers struggling with student debt to navigate the student loan repayment system and regain financial health. In addition to CCCS, EDCAP selected nine other partner organizations throughout the state to serve all of its geographic areas. Seven of these organizations focus on legal services and the other organization is a United Way, indicating that CCCS offers unique and highly regarded services.
CCCS’ collaboration with EDCAP provides CCCS with much needed funding to deliver all student loan counseling services free of charge to WNY residents. EDCAP, in turn, gets a greater and more direct geographic reach into a targeted area. The NYS Department of Financial Services will oversee this project which comes at “a critical time as borrowers navigate the complex student loan repayment system, try to benefit from the latest relief available, and prepare for payment resumption.” EDCAP
A slew of information—including announcements of major, sweeping, long awaited changes to student loan forgiveness that require specific, precise action steps–has steadily flowed recently. We designed our Student Loan Counseling Program to guide borrowers through the complicated process that is frequently intricate and quite possibly thorny. Experienced, Certified Financial Counselors understand that many of those coming for help feel overwhelmed, are confused or just plain over it…and are ready to help all. Our new partnership with EDCAP will allow us to serve even more people. We urge everyone to take positive action that will promote financial stability…Contact us at 716-712-2060 or www.consumercreditbuffalo.org for help with student loans or for any type of financial issues.