Welcome to our Personal Finance Bloggers of Color interview series!
Our goal with this series is to highlight the experiences and perspectives of people of color in terms of money and personal finance topics, as these voices are often underrepresented.
This interview features Belle from Budget with Belle.
1. Please introduce yourself by telling us about your background.
I’m Belle, born in Port Au Prince, Haiti. I grew up in the upper east coast (NJ, RI, MA) area.
2. When and from whom did you acquire knowledge about personal finance?
School of hard knocks. My mother was (still is) a spendthrift while growing up. Never a thought for the morrow. She lived for today, as costly as it was for us growing up.
While my Mom averaged 3-5K (or more) a month in income (back in the 90’s early 2000’s) she didn’t properly invest/save. And things took a dramatic turn for the worse!
I learned from her what NOT to do. Now that I knew what NOT to do. I spent a lot of time at our local library learning what TO DO. Reading the likes of Dave Ramsey, Rich Dad, Poor Dad, biographies of billionaires, etc.
3. Do you feel that your race/cultural background has impacted your life in terms of personal finance? How so?
Absolutely! I oftentimes feel so behind. While in college, I had to balance working full-time while attending school full-time. While my peers had fully funded bank accounts, their parents car, etc., I had to get all those things on my own. And that took away from what I could’ve been doing because I had to work to survive.
That’s just ONE tiny piece of what feels like a never-ending ladder to climb.
4. How did you become interested in personal finance? What made you want to start a blog?
Because of LACK. The lack of knowledge and education on personal finance growing up was the reason why I’ve become so obsessed with it.
I started my blog 2/2016 because of an income report I saw off of Pinterest. This person was making ALL that money from her RV, and I couldn’t believe it, and BOOM! I launched my blog in hopes to turn it into a business (a lifelong passion I’ve had) and to help my fellow peers along through my life experiences.
5. What advice would you give to others with a similar background?
Education. It’s vital for growth. It’s vital for sustainment. It’s VITAL for your life. Yes – it’s that serious. Knowledge is power, and that’s the best offense you can have to combat such a task as personal finance.
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