Committed to a brighter future for children, neighbors and communities.

We consider a healthy neighborhood to be one that is safe, clean, and diverse; one in which it makes economic sense for people to invest and one where neighbors manage change successfully.

We consider a healthy neighborhood to be one that is safe, clean, and diverse; one in which it makes economic sense for people to invest and one where neighbors manage change successfully.

How to Spend Money Mindfully

Here are a few ways to spend your Tax Refund

Receiving a large tax refund can feel like you won the lottery. For many of us, it’s the biggest paycheck we receive all year. That’s a lot of “extra” money at our disposal. 

In fact, about 3 in 4 Americans receive a tax refund each year with the average federal tax refund being $3,200 in 2022. Keep in mind, however, that the money you got back was yours all along. You just gave Uncle Sam a year-long loan and he didn’t have to pay any interest on it. Not a bad deal for him. 

While you shouldn’t necessarily aim to get a large tax refund every year, here are some ideas on how to use your windfall from Uncle Sam. 

Pay off Credit Card Debt. 

Life is expensive. And a lot of what we buy for ourselves, and our loved ones goes on a credit card. Unfortunately, the average credit card interest rate is 19.28 percent. 

That’s why if you have credit card debt, consider using your tax refund to go toward paying that off first. 

Add to your emergency fund

Life happens. And so do unexpected emergencies. The whole world experienced one in 2020, when COVID-19 caused great financial hardship for many people. In the autumn of 2021, some 63 million Americans (29 percent of the adult population) reported it was difficult to pay for household expenses such as food, rent/mortgage, car payments, medical expenses, and student loans. 

What can I claim on my W4 to get more money? 

To receive a bigger refund, adjust line 4(c) on Form W-4, called “Extra withholding,” to increase the federal tax withholding for each paycheck you receive. Tax withholding calculators help you get a big picture view of your refund situation by asking detailed questions. 

If you’d rather have a bigger paycheck and a smaller refund, you can control this. All you must do is submit a new Form W-4 to your employer to adjust your federal income tax withholding. 

Adjusting your withholding could move your refund to your paychecks! 

If getting your refund throughout the year rather than at tax time sounds appealing, you can adjust your withholding today. To do so, you’ll need to fill out a new Form W-4 and submit it to your employer. 

This form requires you to fill in a few sections depending on your situation. The more accurately you complete the form, the more precise your withholding should be.

In summary, income tax can be used for many reasons. It can be used as “fun” money and splurge on wants versus needs, or it can be used to pay down debt and as a stepping stone to financial independence. Choose wisely!

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Grassroots Community Development
Grassroots Community Development4 days ago
Come and Learn about Telehealth
Get ready for an evening of fun and learning! We are calling all Brook Avenue Elementary families to join us on Tuesday, April 23rd, to learn how to access telehealth on your campus from Waco Family Medicine doctors and school nurses. This incredible program can be beneficial and cost-efficient for your family! We will meet at the Brook Avenue cafeteria from 5-6:30 pm and enjoy exciting activities, learn about telehealth, and savor a delicious meal provided by Pastor Fu & Son BBQ -Relief Kitchen, You do not want to miss out on the delicious brisket burgers they will provide; there is enough for your whole family.

We will also raffle two main event gift cards for two lucky students who attend with their families. Don't miss your chance to win!

For more information and to register, please get in touch with Sarai at sarai@grassrootswaco.org or Mrs. Michael at holly.michael@wacoisd.org.

Ven y Aprende de Salud via Telecomunicación
¡Prepárate para una noche de diversión y aprendizaje! Invitamos a todas las familias de Brook Avenue Elementary para que se unan a nosotros el martes 23 de abril para aprender cómo acceder a la Salud via Telecomunicación en su campus de los médicos de Waco Family Medicine y enfermeras escolares. ¡Este increíble programa puede ser beneficioso y economico para su familia! Nos reuniremos en la cafetería de Brook Avenue de 5 a 6:30 pm y disfrutaremos de actividades emocionantes, aprenderemos sobre la telesalud y saborearemos una deliciosa comida proporcionada por Pastor Fu & Son BBQ - Relief Kitchen! No querrás perderte las deliciosas hamburguesas de brisket que te proporcionarán; hay suficiente para toda la familia.

También sortearemos dos tarjetas de Main Event para dos afortunados estudiantes que asistan con sus familias. ¡No pierdas la oportunidad de ganar!

Para obtener más información y registrarse, póngase en contacto con Sarai en sarai@grassrootswaco.org o con la Sra. Michael en holly.michael@wacoisd.org.
Grassroots Community Development
Grassroots Community Development4 days ago
Join us for this workshop in English and Spanish to learn how to protest your property taxes. Bring your tax appraisal letter. The first workshop is tonight!

We hope to see you there!

You can get the details for these workshops in our Facebook Events!
Grassroots Community Development
Grassroots Community Development4 days ago
We're only 2 weeks away! We are excited to celebrate our community with you!

Visit our website to grab your tickets!
Grassroots Community Development
Grassroots Community Development6 days ago
“My friend, My friend” are the words you’ll most likely hear when you enter Rene’s Restaurant, located at 1912 Speight Ave.

This year, owners Maria C. Hernandez and Emanuel Hernandez celebrated the 24th year of Rene’s operation as a family-owned business. Maria reflected with us about the experiences that led them to open their business: “I’m originally from Mexico. I would have never thought that I’d have a business in the United States. In Mexico, I had studied and graduated from university and worked in HR. But I had a dream to learn English and decided I wanted to learn English in the U.S. So, I had permission to be here 6 months and enrolled in school in Waco. I really liked Waco because it was calm. I felt peace here.”

“More than anything, it was God putting angels in my path – in our paths. God has also opened doors for us that we didn’t know at the time we would be walking into. I worked for a year and a half at Lolita’s, where I first met my husband. My husband has always had a talent in the kitchen and is a good leader. Because I like to have relationships with people and build community, it made sense for us to open a restaurant. However, it took us several steps to get there.”

“Before Rene’s, I worked at El Charro Café for 8 years. That was where I encountered an angel. The owner of El Charro Café helped me work on my documents and began my journey to becoming a resident. That’s what I love about South Waco – people feel like family; when someone grieves, we all grieve; when someone celebrates, we are all in celebration.”

“After those 8 years, we really were excited to start our own business and use our God-given talents. That’s where we met another angel - Mr. Neuman. He owned the entire strip; his business, where we currently operate, and the bus terminal next door. But we asked if we could rent out the space, and he let us know that if we could fix it up, he wanted us to have it."

"And then there came another angel at Community Bank and Trust – Gary. We weren’t sure if we could get a loan, but he walked us through the entire process and was there for any questions we had. Mr. Neuman sold us the lot and was always a great neighbor. To this day, we have good relationships with the people around us. And there’s so much more; COVID, the construction and widening of 1-35, and so many other experiences – but we’ve seen God’s hand in everything.”

“We want Rene’s to be a place of peace where people can come, build relationships with each other, get great service, and great food. We have regulars and new people, with many coming through our doors. We’re grateful to them. And we love to show that gratitude through support for the community, whether that be helping schools or churches, donating plates, sweet bread, coupons, and more when we can. If there’s a need, we will try to help.”

Rene’s is open Monday through Saturday from 6am-3pm. With friendly faces, great service, and delicious food, Rene’s is the place to be!
Grassroots Community Development
Grassroots Community Development1 week ago
We will be hosting our workshops again this year. Check out our website or our Facebook Events for more information!

https://grassrootswaco.org/blog/upcoming-property-tax-workshops-2024/
Grassroots Community Development
Grassroots Community Development2 weeks ago
Let’s Celebrate!
Thank you to everyone who came to our 3rd PACTT meeting at Brook Avenue Elementary. We appreciate the 5 families who made it out to learn about how to care for Mental Health.
We want to give a big thanks to Vince Erickson at the Heart of Texas Behavioral Health Network who gave an awesome and informative presentation on how to care for your mental health and what resources the HOTBHN offers.
We are also grateful for Columbus Avenue Baptist Church staff and members who provided a delicious baked potato dinner!
All Brook Avenue families are invited to the next PACTT meeting on April 23 from 5-6:30 pm to learn about Telehealth and eat a delicious meal from Pastor Fu & Son BBQ -Relief Kitchen!

For more information please reach out to Saraí at sarai@grassrootswaco.org or Mrs. Holly Michaels at holly.michael@wacoisd.org.