There are many components to the Circles program that support and encourage Circle Leaders as they work toward their financial goals. One of these components is the Individual Development Account (IDA). Through a generous donation from Fifth Third Bank, IDA contributions are matched 2:1. Over the 18 month program, Leaders who contribute $20/month will receive $720 in match dollars, totaling $1,080 to put toward a small business, reliable transportation, housing, or post-secondary education.
Two of our recent Circle Graduates are putting their IDAs to great use to gain further financial stability.
Janelle & Transportation Transportation was a significant barrier to Janelle pursuing employment. She had a car donated to her, but the cost of insurance and fees for a title and license kept the vehicle from being usable. Janelle was able to use her IDA to make the car ready for the road, and now works for Holland Public Schools. Her vehicle allows her to travel to work as well as to organizations in town where she volunteers. She also offers rides to her neighbors who do not have reliable transportation.
“My IDA brought me closer to financial independence and has improved my life in so many ways. Because of the split-shift schedule, I would not have this job that
I love if I didn’t have a car. It has built so much confidence in me because I’m making a positive impact on the children, and they have a positive impact on me as well!”
Lucy & Post-Secondary Education
Lucy’s story is one of dedication. Even after having to leave the Holland area, she Skyped into Circle meetings, had regular video chats her Ally, and continued to contribute to her IDA. Lucy is now using her contribution and the match from Fifth Third Bank toward classes to become a medical assistant.
“I really am grateful that Good Samaritan Ministries has the Individual Development Account program that will help in the repayment of my college loans. I would encourage anyone who is struggling with their finances and is trying to better themselves to go to the Circles meetings. You will gain not only knowledge, but the true friendship of people who really care about your wellbeing.”
What to learn more about Circles? Contact Lotefa Bartlett de Villarreal about how you can get involved!