VITA: Volunteer Income Tax Assistance
VITA, the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program, offers training for volunteers in basic tax preparation, as well as the opportunity to prepare taxes for local families in Chester during tax season. VITA is a program sponsored by the Internal Revenue Service and is designed to encourage low-income families to access the Earned Income Tax Credit without having to pay for tax preparation services. VITA also helps families to avoid the predatory lending practices by some tax preparation companies. Delaware County Asset Development, a consortium of non-profit organizations and institutes of higher education, sponsors the training and supports the sites hosting the VITA program.
Swarthmore students engaged with the VITA program work in the City of Chester during the tax season. During tax season 2007, volunteers from the College helped Delaware County families access $243,239 in refunds calculated at the two sites served: Chester Education Foundation and Chester Micro Enterprise Partnership.