Our students, our communities, our future.
At CEDAM, one of our top policy priorities is economic inclusion, because we believe that every Michigander deserves the resources they need to succeed. One way we work to achieve this is leading the Michigan Children’s Saving Account (CSA) Network, which oversees CSA programs across the state.
CSA programs are a uniquely impactful way for communities to increase the postsecondary education and career training attainment of their students. Programs engage students and their families early, before they stop believing in the power of their dreams, and can be customized to fit the needs of individual communities.
Through the Network, we create and maintain infrastructure that helps local programs meet their community’s needs more efficiently and equitably — making postsecondary education and career training accessible and believable for all students.
About the Network
CEDAM convenes the Michigan CSA Network, the state’s only coalition of CSA programs, leaders, and partners. By incorporating a variety of perspectives from state agency leaders to local communities themselves, the Network is able to identify strategies that will most effectively serve CSA communities and advocate for these on a statewide level. The Network provides organizations with the technical assistance and infrastructure they need to maintain successful CSA programs – because local organizations know their own communities best.
Since CEDAM established the Network in 2017, the coalition has grown to more than 60 partners committed to economic inclusion, including:
- State agencies
- Community foundations
- School districts
- Banks and credit unions
- Non-profit organizations
- And more
Members of the Michigan CSA Network meet quarterly to discuss the future growth and development of CSA programs in the state, as well as share knowledge and best practices. Becoming a member is not only an opportunity to gain knowledge and learn from others, it’s also the first step in helping your community, its families, and students dream big.
We invest in success by providing the resources and assistance for communities to transform their students’ postsecondary aspirations into attainment.
- Communities know themselves best.
- Small steps can lead to big opportunities.
- We are stronger together.
About CSA Programs
Michigan’s Children’s Savings Account (CSA) programs are community-led initiatives that establish community-wide support systems that encourage students, their families, and entire communities to dream big. As part of the Michigan CSA Network, these programs are located throughout the state and are often implemented through school districts, local financial institutions, and other community partners.
These accounts grow throughout the years, ideally providing financial support for educational endeavors after high school (whether that’s college, a trade school, or another form of schooling). But far more important than the savings themselves is how these programs inspire students and their families to believe in their dreams.
As savings grow, so does hope — over time, these programs help students and their families develop positive banking habits, expanding economic inclusion across the state.
- Over 38,000 students are currently enrolled in 17 local CSA programs within the Michigan CSA Network
- Collectively, these students and their families have saved $1.1 million for future educational attainment, such as college
- 47% of CSA-enrolled students in Michigan are from low- to moderate-income households, populations that traditionally face barriers to economic inclusion
OUR PROGRAMS’ MISSION
We build communities that believe in students’ dreams, and share resources to help make these aspirations a reality.
OUR PROGRAMS’ VALUES
- Everyone deserves an opportunity.
- Communities have the potential to uplift dreams.
- Trust is earned.
How to get involved
All of us have a role to play in creating a more inclusive banking environment. Together, we can use locally based solutions to solve this statewide issue.
Join the Network
The Michigan CSA Network is made up of community foundations, nonprofits, and local governments hoping to create long-term change. Membership is free, and meetings are quarterly. To join, contact Brian Rakovitis at email@example.com or 517.485.3588 ext. 1942.
Start a CSA program
Want to learn more about how a CSA could work in your community? We can help you get started. For direct technical assistance and program development information, please contact Brian Rakovitis at firstname.lastname@example.org or 517.485.3588 ext. 1942.
Support a CSA program
There are 17 programs out there already that are always looking for more champions. To see how you can help more Michigan students achieve their postsecondary dreams, please contact your local program or Brian Rakovitis at email@example.com or 517.485.3588 ext. 1942.
CSA programs at work
Barry Community Foundation works alongside partners to oversee KickStart to Career, a CSA program that provides Barry County kindergartners with a savings account seeded with $50, designed to help students start saving money for their future college or career training expenses.
Lapeer County Community Foundation’s LEAF program makes kindergarteners from all private and public school districts in the county eligible to enroll in postsecondary savings accounts. LEAF educates students about saving and planning for the future, and also provides financial education classes for parents on topics including credit scores and budgeting.
As Michigan’s longest active CSA program, Lansing SAVE is a children’s savings program made possible by a collective of partners including City of Lansing, the Lansing School District, and MSUFCU. The program provides CSAs to help Lansing School District students start saving money for their future college or career training expenses, and also brings financial education specialists to local area schools to share educational tools for students.
Point of Contact
517.485.3588 (ext. 1942)