A new state program, Fresh Start, is designed to help families and individuals who have experienced foreclosures, job loss or other financial difficulties stemming from the financial crisis that began in 2008, Gov. John Carney and other officials announced May 23.

Fresh Start, a partnership between the Delaware State Housing Authority and the state’s financial empowerment program, $tand By Me, offers free financial coaching to help Delawareans get past setbacks and move toward home ownership again.

The statewide program, funded by bank settlements, was developed to help Delawareans who lost their homes because of foreclosure, short sale or deed in lieu arrangements, said DSHA Director Anas Ben Addi. They may wish to improve credit, increase savings or decrease debt to put them in a better position to buy a home or rent.

$tand By Me works with nonprofits to offer personal financial coaching, with four coaches statewide devoted to helping Fresh Start clients.

Since it began six years ago, $tand By Me has served more than 75,000 Delawareans, including more than 14,000 who have participated in financial coaching.

Carney and other leaders spoke at an event formally kicking off the program at the Goodwill store at Lea Boulevard in Wilmington. Goodwill is one of three nonprofits with Fresh Start financial coaches, along with NCALL Research and Interfaith Community Housing of Delaware.

For information, visit standbyme.org/fresh or call 504-3549 or 652-3991, ext. 106, in New Castle County, 678-9400 in Kent County or 855-1370 in Sussex County.