Making Cents for Life (MCFL) is a matched savings account program for high school juniors and seniors. Students who complete the program will be matched $3 dollars for every $1 dollar saved, up to $750, a combined total of $1,000 in savings. Over the course of the program, these students learn about asset accumulation, banking relationships, credit and debt issues, investing, identity theft, insurance basics, practicing fiscal self-discipline and using sound budgeting practices.
The program provides local youth from low-income families, who have traditionally lacked access to viable career opportunities, with an education that could make college attendance or vocational training possible. Making Cents for Life lays the groundwork for a financially responsible lifestyle. One of the program highlights is the opportunity for students to save at least $250 ($50/month for 5 months) for college and VCCDC Financial Coaching will match them 3-to-1 for up to $1,000 upon successful completion of the program.* Participants use their savings and matching funds toward continuing their education and/or vocational training.
The program has been an undeniable success, with 95% of the participants meeting the following effectiveness measures established by VCCDC Financial Coaching:
- Retention – students who remained in the program for a minimum of 5 months
- Contribution – students who contributed a minimum of $25/month while in the program
- Participation – completion of the financial and savings club meeting
- Asset Building – students’ families who pursued homeownership
VCCDC Financial Coaching is currently looking to expand this program by continuing to raise funds and working with the local high school and VCCDC Youth Council to promote this opportunity.
*To receive the matching funds, students had to maintain a grade point average of 2.0 or higher and complete the entire YIDA program, which included a 50-hour internship/job-shadowing assignment and/or 50 hours of community service, in addition to depositing a minimum of $50 per month into a Citibank account and attending field trips and educational sessions, such as YIDA program student meetings.
Want to contribute to these students’ success? Purchase a gift certificate to El Pescador in Fillmore from the VCCDC office & your contribution will go to the MCFL Program!