In Debt? Enter a contest to win $20,000Posted: Updated:
PHOENIX, Ariz -- There are a lot of Arizonans out there who would like a financial do-over, maybe from the recession, maybe from a layoff or a big life-event. There may now be help in the form of a new competition: a reality internet show.
It's called "My Comeback" with Kurt Warner, and is sponsored by Arizona Federal Credit Union. The whole idea behind the contest is to empower struggling consumers. "I'm about $160,000 in debt, foreclosure, about $30,000 is in student loans," Valley father Robert Dale said in a You Tube video he entered online.
Robert Dale, a 36-year-old single father of three, says he never imagined his life would look like this. He thought his college education would land him a technical job in television, but says a series of sidetracks, including a stint as a professional golfer without sponsorship, drove him into financial hardship.
"When it's hard, you make short-sighted financial decisions, payday loans, gambling, stupid things, plus all the money I was paying to chase my dream that really really set me back," he said.
Dale says it was only by accident, through social media that he stumbled on information about the credit union's contest. "I was like oh, my, my comeback, and I was like I need to come back so I read more into it and thought more of what it was and was like all right I'm going to submit a video."
His financial hardship became an instant hit with the judges. "Robert's story is compelling because it's not uncommon, there are a lot of people out there just treading water and what we hope to show is that you don't have to stay in that position forever, almost anybody has a way out," said Steve Kelley, Vice President of Marketing for Arizona Federal Credit Union.
Kelley is hopeful this contest will inspire others to do what Dale did and ask for help and recognize the warning signs. When the reality show hits the internet, the finalists will pair up with financial experts and work on ways to improve their financial situation.
They will also learn how to give back, life lessons Dale hopes will help inspire others. "If I have the opportunity to get picked, it would be amazing, and hopefully teach others not to make the same mistakes I made."
As many as five contestants will soon be chosen to participate in "My Comeback." The online reality show is expected to go live in early March.
You can find more information online.