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Mercer Alliance to End Homelessness
Would You Like to Learn a New Skill?

Seeking Volunteers to join the Mercer C.A.S.H (Creating Assets, Savings and Hope) Campaign to conduct free tax preparation for low-income families and individuals who make less than $49,000 a year in Mercer County.

You receive IRS training in tax preparation and certification, along with learning a valuable skill of public relations while helping your neighbor and community.

Open House
Thursday, September 27, 2012
3131 Princeton Pike, Bldg. 4, Suite 113
Lawrenceville, NJ
(Come to the rear of the bldg. enter @ glass door on left)
Time: 1:00pm-2:00pm or 4:30pm-6:30pm

To find out more information, please come and join us at the Open House. To register email: mewilliams@merceralliance.org no later than Wednesday, September 25, 2012.

House Logo Tax Prep Volunteers

Below are volunteers busy at work assisting taxpayers with their tax return prep; Celebrating the end of the tax season at the volunteer luncheon, At opening day at the United Way of Greater Mercer County United Empowerment Center. We thank our volunteers and forward to having back for the 2012-2013 Tax Season

House Logo Ten Reasons
Why You Should Become a Trained and Certified Tax Volunteer

The Internal Revenue Service is seeking community volunteers to provide free tax help to qualified individuals during the tax filing season.

Managed by the IRS, the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and the Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) programs are community based partnerships that provide free tax return preparation for low-to-moderate income taxpayers, seniors, people with disabilities and those with limited English skills. If you are looking for a way to help in your community, then consider becoming a tax volunteer. People helping people - it's that simple.

Here are 10 things the IRS wants you to know about becoming a community volunteer for VITA or TCE.

1. No previous experience is required. Volunteers receive specialized training and - if tax preparation is not preferable - have the option of serving in a variety of other roles.

2. If you are fluent in a language other than English, you can help those who do not speak English understand their tax return.

3. IRS provides free tax law training and materials needed to prepare basic individual income tax returns.

4. Volunteers become familiar with deductions, allowable expenses and credits that benefit eligible taxpayers, such as the Earned Income Tax Credit, the Child Tax Credit and the Credit for the Elderly.

5. The hours are flexible. Volunteers generally serve an average of three to four hours per week from mid-January through the tax filing deadline, which is April 15, 2013.

6. Volunteer sites are generally located at community and neighborhood centers, libraries, schools, shopping malls and other convenient locations.

7. Most VITA/TCE sites offer free electronic filing for both federal and state tax returns.

8. As a tax volunteer, veterans (and non-veterans alike) may choose to help military personnel and their families.

9. Volunteers will become part of an established program that has helped community members file tax returns at no charge for more than four decades.

10. You can make a difference as a tax volunteer.

Last year nearly 99,000 community volunteers answered the call and made a difference by preparing over 3.3 million tax returns for free at more than 13,000 locations nationwide. Anyone can volunteer for this exciting, educational and enjoyable experience. Sign up to become a tax volunteer and see what a difference learning about taxes and helping others makes in your life.

From: IRS Summertime Tax Tip 2012-23, IRS Tax Tips, an IRS e-mail service. For more information on federal taxes please visit IRS.gov.

House Logo Goodbye and Thank you, Scott

Scott Fairman left Mercer Alliance after four years as part of our team. For three years, he served as a VISTA (Volunteer In Service To America) researching and developing programs to assist individuals experiencing homelessness. Scott studied employment strategies creating a white paper.

Scott researched ID issues and created the Mercer Alliance Homeless ID project with assistance from Mercer County Superintendent of Election, City of Trenton, Office of Vital Statistics Mercer County Clerk’s Office, New Jersey Department of Vital Statistics, Greater Trenton Behavioral Health Care, Salvation Army Drop-in Center, Rescue Mission of Trenton, Trenton Area Soup Kitchen, Libbie Counselman and Amy Lydon, Volunteers. Over 200 individuals have been assisted in obtaining a photo ID which allows them better function in the process of recovery.

He researched homeless courts resulting in a pilot project in Trenton, Fresh Opportunity Program, for those with outstanding municipal warrants in conjunction with Pat Budd, of Central Jersey Legal Service, Trenton Courts, Catholic Charities, Greater Trenton Behavioral Healthcare and volunteer attorneys from Mercer County.

Scott was a wonderful volunteer for the Mercer CASH (Creating Assets, Savings & Hope) campaign by doing free tax preparation at the Boys & Girls Club, United Empowerment Center and many of our Super Tax events. Scott will continue helping the cause to end homelessness by working on special projects for Mercer Alliance. We wish him luck with his new endeavors.

House Logo Welcome Michelle

In late August, a new staff member, Michelle Williams started at Mercer Alliance to End Homelessness. A volunteer for Project Homelessness for several years, Michelle joins as a VISTA (Volunteer In Service To America). Her focus will be to recruit more volunteers for our free tax sites and for Project Homeless Connect. She will also promote the Earned Income Tax Credit in Trenton. To volunteer you can contact Michelle at mewilliams@merceralliance.org.

House Logo For More Information

Please Contact: Tarry Truitt, Communications and Project Manager, ttruitt@merceralliance.org or 609-844-1008.


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