Michigan should take action to get more households banked
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Michigan should take action to get more households banked

Written by Madeleine March-Meenagh and Brian Rakovitis, CEDAM Being banked is foundational to good financial health. Without a checking or savings account, “unbanked” households pay more in fees and interest for financial products than banked households— yearly they pay up to $3,000 per household, have limited access to credit, and lack protections for their money....

Aspirations lost: Youth focused asset-building programs are the key to maintaining hope for the future during a pandemic
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Aspirations lost: Youth focused asset-building programs are the key to maintaining hope for the future during a pandemic

Written by CEDAM’s Madeleine March-Meenagh, junior program evaluation associate and Brian Rakovitis, manager of financial empowerment initiatives COVID-19 has robbed us of our health and economic security; now it seeks to steal our youth’s hope for the future. A recent study shows the pandemic has precipitated an aspirations crisis for youth and young adults. The...

Getting to know Melvin Henley, CEDAM’s new coalition manager
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Getting to know Melvin Henley, CEDAM’s new coalition manager

CEDAM is excited to introduce its new coalition manager, Melvin Henley! Melvin was previously an organizational development consultant and strategy specialist at Nonprofit Enterprise at Work (NEW) and joins the CEDAM team with a wide range of experiences including strategy planning, board development and more. I met with Melvin (over Zoom) to learn more about...

Our future is stronger with Children’s Savings Accounts (CSA)
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Our future is stronger with Children’s Savings Accounts (CSA)

A quick glance at Michigan’s growing CSA field By Brian Rakovitis, manager of financial empowerment initiatives Removing barriers to postsecondary attainment in Michigan provides more opportunities for low- and moderate-income communities, improves the quality of life for residents, and helps combat inequality. Savings play an important role in achieving increased attainment. Studies have found that...

CDC National Eviction Moratorium only delays the coming wave of evictions, Congress must take action
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CDC National Eviction Moratorium only delays the coming wave of evictions, Congress must take action

By Benjamin Andrews, junior policy associate The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) issued a nationwide eviction moratorium on Friday, September 4. The CDC recognizes the necessity of sanitation, distancing, and quarantining throughout this pandemic, and that these precautions are best enabled by people remaining stably housed. The moratorium—in place until December 31, 2020—is an important...

Small-dollar savings lead to big rewards: What Michigan can learn from the UK’s Child Trust Fund
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Small-dollar savings lead to big rewards: What Michigan can learn from the UK’s Child Trust Fund

By Brian Rakovitis, manager of financial empowerment initiatives Nearly two decades ago the United Kingdom government decided to invest in its future (and its youth) by opening savings accounts for every child before their first birthday. As Michigan communities pursue similar initiatives, this program provides further evidence for what we already know: small-dollar savings lead...

In solidarity: A letter from our executive director
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In solidarity: A letter from our executive director

Dear CEDAM members and supporters, The past week has been a heavy and heartbreaking one. With you I mourn the lives of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor — two Black Americans recently murdered by the police — and all those killed before them. I stand in solidarity with the thousands of protesters who are calling...

Changes to CRA expand opportunities for nonprofits responding to COVID-19
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Changes to CRA expand opportunities for nonprofits responding to COVID-19

By Brian Rakovitis, manager of financial empowerment initiatives On March 19, 2020, the Federal Reserve Board, the FDIC, and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency released a joint statement on CRA consideration for activities in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The joint statement details changes to financial institutions when working with customers, expands...