Pikes Peak United Way still in need of volunteers for tax preparation program

Published: Jan. 23, 2023 at 11:46 AM MST
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - The Pikes Peak United Way is looking for a few good volunteers!

Monday marks the official start of tax season, and the local United Way is bringing back its Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. The program helps households that earn less than $60,000 a year file income taxes for free. It’s almost entirely volunteer-run, and the United Way says its need for those volunteers this year is critical.

“Pikes Peak United Way is committed to providing free income tax services to residents in Colorado Springs,” said Cindy Aubrey, Pikes Peak United Way president and CEO. “For many, tax returns are crucial to maintaining stability and basic needs. Volunteers play a key role in the VITA program, and we desperately need volunteers to help us carry out this program.”

Volunteers can come from any background -- “no specific professional qualifications are required to volunteer with VITA,” the United Way said -- but those who have worked as bookkeepers, accountants, and in the financial sector may find VITA a natural fit. More on being a volunteer, per the United Way:

“Pikes Peak United Way encourages potential volunteers to take advantage of employer-sponsored benefits for volunteer time off. Volunteers are not required to have previous training, and anyone can volunteer. Volunteers can choose to work at one of five VITA sites that will offer weekly appointments. With enough interest, Pikes Peak United Way also hopes to be able to provide VITA “pop-ups” for local schools and businesses with employees that would qualify for VITA assistance. Visit https://www.ppunitedway.org to learn more.”

Volunteers will have to be certified by the IRS, something the United Way says it can help with.

“While it may sound daunting, the VITA certification is a self-paced and open resource. It can be tedious, but it is not difficult! We offer study sessions and assistance for volunteers working on their certifications,” said Elizabeth Quevedo, director of community impact at Pikes Peak United Way.