Through our effective combination of savings incentives, financial savvy, and ongoing support, families become fully engaged in the higher education process.
Children’s Savings Accounts (CSAs), also known as Children’s Development Accounts (CDAs) are long-term savings or investment accounts that provide incentives to help children – especially low-income children- build savings for specific goals such as college, small business, housing, or a wedding, or toward any expense. Family ownership of assets has been shown to give children a transformative sense of possibility and hope for the future. In fact, research indicates that low- and moderate- income children with college savings of just $500 or less are 3 times more likely to enroll in college and 4 times more likely to graduate.
From its launch, Inversant has been data-driven, relying on a variety of evaluation metrics to test our savings products, incentives, and educational outreach formats to meet the needs of our families. We seek to share our best practices and learn from others’ to enhance CSA research and policy nationwide. To that end, Inversant participates in several regional and national CSA networks, such as Boston Federal Reserve’s New England CSA Consortium, and the 1:1 Fund affiliated with Prosperity Now. In June 2015, we joined the “Campaign for Every Kid’s Future” to raise visibility of CSA’s and ensure that at least 1.4 million children have a savings account in their name by 2020.
The CSA movement has gained incredible momentum around the world and in the United States, and is at a critical time in its evolution, A report published by Prosperity Now indicated that “CSAs are gaining traction around the country, not as a fad or a merely interesting alternative but as potentially powerful tool with which to improve educational attainment and make existing institutions- K-12 schools, universities, the financial aid system- work better, especially for disadvantaged students.”
In Massachusetts, Inversant has been instrumental in convincing the legislature to create a commission to examine the desirability and feasibility of a statewide CSA program in Massachusetts. After five years, these efforts culminated into the passing of a bill establishing a two-year pilot CSA program in at least five cities in MA. The program will be managed by the Office of Economic Empowerment in Massachusetts State Treasury. We look forward to sharing more updates on this program along the year.