live / 2015

Turning Effort Into Opportunity Through Saving

Turning Effort Into Opportunity Through Saving

Idea submitted in the My LA2050 Maker Challenge by EARN

EARN will expand our innovative, online, matched savings program to serve families in Los Angeles. EARN’s program promotes positive financial behavior and develops a lasting habit of saving, which is the first step in achieving financial security and upward mobility. Through saving, individuals can weather financial storms, and invest in their dreams


In what areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?

  • County of Los Angeles
  • City of Los Angeles
  • Magnolia Catchment Area

How do you plan to use these resources to make change?

  • Conduct research
  • Engage residents and stakeholders
  • Expand a pilot or a program
  • Advocate with policymakers and leaders

How will your proposal improve the following “Live” metrics?

  • Number of households below the self-sufficiency index
  • Percentage of LA communities that are resilient (Dream Metric)

Please explain how you will evaluate your work.

EARN rigorously evaluates our savings products; over the course of the program we track our client’s financial security and spending and saving behaviors. Our ultimate goal is to improve economic self-sufficiency by helping our clients build savings. Therefore, we also evaluate our work by the impact it has on financial behavior in the long-term. Key indicators we assess are if program users:

o Demonstrate a regular pattern of saving and reach their savings goals. o Continue saving 6 months to a year after the program ends using a.) either a mainstream savings product or b.) an EARN goal-based account. o Show an improvement in psychosocial behavior towards saving. For example: Being more prepared for financial emergencies and reporting more self-efficacy regarding their financial future.

Our goals are for: o 300 LA households will enroll and deposit at least $20 a month. o 85% of participants will complete the program and 70% will consistently reach their monthly deposit goal.

How can the LA2050 community and other stakeholders help your proposal succeed?

  • Money (financial capital)
  • Publicity/awareness (social capital)
  • Community outreach
  • Network/relationship support
  • Quality improvement research