Two of America's biggest credit card issuers recently announced major plans to invest in economic progress by helping families secure jobs, housing, and education.

Capital One invests in poverty-fighting partnership

Capital One's commitment of $1 million in funding and in-kind donations will help support LIFT's economic advocacy programs in Chicago, Washington DC, New York, Philadelphia, Boston, and Los Angeles. The bank and the non-profit organization announced the pledge at LIFT's Annual Spring Benefit fundraiser in Manhattan. Since 1998, advocates for LIFT have helped families secure housing, education and employment.

In a statement to reporters, LIFT co-founder Kirsten Lodal explained how her organization's success stems from a holistic approach to community outreach. "Moving past crisis to economic stability requires more than income," Lodal said. "It requires strengthening a person's confidence, making sure they have people in their corner, and navigating to the resources they need to stabilize their lives, like decent jobs and safe housing." In addition to program funding, Capital One's commitment includes organizational support from staff members in each of the six target cities.

Discover hires military family members to help cardholders

An ad campaign for the Discover it Card emphasizes that cardholders can speak directly with live customer service agents located within the United States. During a special ceremony at Delaware's Dover Air Force Base, company officials revealed that many of the voices picking up the phone for customers will be members of military families, working from home as part of a new employment initiative.

Discover's program enables recruits to train at the credit card issuer's award-winning call center in nearby New Castle, Del. According to company officials, Discover supplies all equipment and broadband connections necessary to turn a spare room into a virtual extension of the lender's customer service operation. Should a spouse or a family member's deployment require a move to a different city, the employees can continue serving customers from their new home offices.