What is an IDA ?

 Coalición Fortaleza takes great pride in its participation in the IDA Initiative, a collaborative effort spanning over two decades dedicated to addressing the challenges faced by communities disproportionately affected by economic disparities.

At the core of the IDA Program lies the encouragement for individuals to cultivate assets, encompassing vital aspects of financial empowerment: education, savings, asset acquisition, and asset preservation. Emphasizing racial equity, the program empowers Oregonians to exercise autonomy and enhance their financial well-being significantly.

In a recent newsletter from Oregon Housing & Community Services (OHCS), Andrea Bell lauded the Oregon Individual Development Account Initiative as a model of successful collaboration between state institutions and community-based organizations. This partnership aims to foster more inclusive, resilient, and equitable communities statewide.

Since its inception, the IDA program has transformed the lives of over 17,000 Oregonians across 35 counties, disbursing $68 million in matching funds to savers. By making IDAs accessible to historically marginalized Oregon residents, including those from Black, Native American, Latinx, and Asian communities, the Initiative addresses systemic barriers to lasting financial stability.

Individual Development Accounts (IDAs) offer matching cash for asset building, information about financial systems, and community-based support for Oregonians with low to moderate incomes. Participants use IDA match dollars to leverage the power of their own savings in support of their financial goals. Match amounts and asset goals vary by saver, with timelines ranging from 6 months to 3+ years.  

For over 20 years, the coalition of partners that make up the IDA Initiative have worked to act on the solutions coming from communities most impacted by an inequitable economy. The result is a community-affirmed program, centered in racial equity, that supports Oregonians to exercise greater self-determination and make meaningful improvements to their financial well-being. Working with culturally responsive and culturally specific service providers, IDAs offer a holistic solution that can help households address their complex financial lives, overcome emergency challenges, protect employment and income, and invest in wealth-building assets. 

On behalf of Oregon’s Department of Housing and Community Services and Department of Revenue, the statewide nonprofit Neighborhood Partnerships(NP) manages funds, leads the strategic direction of the Initiative, evaluates outcomes, and supports the IDA-related work of partner organizations. NP works directly with contributors and accepts all donations on behalf of the Initiative. Contributions are eligible for an Oregon IDA Tax Credit

­­

We are thrilled to share with you an exciting update regarding the Individual Development Account (IDA) Program. This innovative initiative is designed to empower individuals and foster financial stability by promoting saving and asset building. 

You May be wondering what exactly is the IDA program ?

It is a powerful tool that helps individuals achieve their long term financial goals through a matched savings account.

With the support go the program, participants can save money towards important life milestones such as education, homeownership, entrepreneurship, emergency savings or even retirement.

 

The IDA program also goes beyond financial assistance. It emphasizes financial education and counseling to empower participants with essential skills to manage their money effectively. Participants receive guidance on budgeting, debt management, credit building, and other financial topics, ensuring their long-term success even after completing the program. By investing in individuals, the IDA program fosters economic growth, strengthens communities, and creates a pathway to a brighter, more prosperous future.

We were sad to hear that this year’s legislative session did not allocate additional general funds for the program. The good news is that the tax credit remains and will not end until 2030. We will continue to advocate and fundraise for the IDA program because we know how important it is for our community members. 

– More than 17,000 Oregon residents have saved in IDAs

-Collectively, IDA participants have made savings deposits of more than $36 million

-More than 2,600 people are currently saving

-$68 million in state matching dollars have been distributed to approximately 12,000 savers for asset investments

-IDAs have been opened in 35 of Oregon’s 36 counties

-All participants are provided information about financial systems and community-based supports to build financial capability and successfully reach their goals