Bringing Partners Together for Financial Education News in Indian Country
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 January 13, 2015

Attention NFEC Partners | Please Share With Us Your Financial Education Efforts - Events, Resources, and Services!

As we go forward into the New Year, one of Native Financial Education Coalition’s (NFEC) goals is to strengthen its communication efforts by collecting the latest news and opportunities that will grow financial education awareness in Indian Country. In order for NFEC to achieve this goal, it will take collaboration from all partners to share any notifications, such as: upcoming events, conferences, program curriculum, potential funding opportunities and updates regarding financial education resources that would benefit Native communities. In this edition of Partner News, there are three funding opportunities that may help to support your work, please continue reading to learn more! Let NFEC get the word out about all of your financial education efforts by leveraging the NCAI network footprint and putting your notifications in our monthly NFEC Partner News letter, which is sent out to an alliance of tribes, Native organizations, federal government agencies, private financial institutions, Congressional policymakers, and others committed to improving financial capability in Native communities.

We appreciate your interest and commitment to the work of NFEC, and we look forward to working with you to strengthen awareness of financial education in Indian Country.

Please send any financial education related notifications to: Joel Chastain, NCAI Fellow at

Corporation for Enterprise Development | Children's Savings Directory

CFED is excited to announce the launch of the new Children’s Savings Directory! The directory provides information—such as enrollment method, target population and savings incentives offered—about children’s savings initiatives across the country. As part of CFED commitment to providing support to this growing field, the Directory will help practitioners, researchers, policymakers and others learn more about existing and planned children’s savings initiatives and connect with other programs. 

The information in the directory was collected from survey responses by CSA programs, as well as publicly available program details. If you would like to add your children's savings program or update your program information, please e-mail Chris Bernal at

Department of Health and Human Services | Native Asset Building Initiative Grant

The Office of Community Services (OCS) and the Administration for Native Americans (ANA) have partnered to increase access to and awareness of asset building opportunities in Native American communities. OCS and ANA are program offices within the Administration for Children and Families (ACF). OCS and ANA will accept applications to establish and administer asset building projects with a focus on Assets for Independence (AFI) projects. The AFI focus of each project requires that eligible participants are given access to matched savings accounts, called Individual Development Accounts (IDA), in which participants save earned income for the purchase of a home, for business capitalization, or to attend higher education or training. Grantees will provide an array of additional supports and services to enable low-income individuals and families to become economically self-sufficient for the long term. Additional services offered to participants may include financial literacy education, credit counseling, coaching on money management and consumer issues, business support, home ownership support services, and other supportive services that enable them to become more financially secure. The IDA portion of the project is funded by OCS. ANA funds may be used to pay for costs associated with project administration and to provide other asset-building strategies. Under the funding opportunity announcement (FOA), applicants will submit 1 application that identifies a single work plan and 2 budgets, that is, a budget for each award. Successful applicants will receive an OCS-AFI award and an ANA-SEDS award.

Link to Additional Information:

Community Financial Empowerment Learning Partnership | Requesting for Proposals

We’re excited to share a new Request for Proposals for an intensive learning partnership with CFED focused on improving and expanding financial capability services, both within organizations, as well as to align and coordinate service delivery among community partners.

With support from JPMorgan Chase, CFED is accepting applications from organizations and partnerships of organizations interested in joining an 18-month Community Financial Empowerment Learning Partnership to improve and expand financial capability service delivery within their organizations and to align and coordinate service delivery within their communities. Because CFED is committed to helping families achieve financial security, they seek to increase the number of clients accessing financial capability services and to heighten awareness of and interest in integrated service delivery by the broader field.

This Learning Partnership, which runs from April 2015-September 2016, will utilize three approaches in helping organizations build capacity: technical assistance, convening and peer learning. Organizations selected to participate will receive $20,000 in grant funds to support their participation in the Learning Partnership.

Ideal learning partnership members will be organizations or partnerships of organizations that are currently providing at least two or more financial capability services and are interested in taking these services to the next level to improve and expand their delivery for greater community impact.

Interested applicants should download and review the full Request for Proposals. All proposals should be submitted to CFED via email to no later than Wednesday, February 18, 2015 at 5:00pm PT.

If you have questions about this RFP, please contact Dominique Derbigny at

Financial Industry Regulatory Authority | Grant Opportunities 

Through the General Grant Program, the FINRA Investor Education Foundation funds research and educational projects that support its mission of providing under-served Americans with the knowledge, skills and tools necessary for financial success throughout life.
In 2015, the FINRA Foundation welcomes applications for projects of approximately $50,000–$100,000 that advance understanding of the relationships among financial literacy, financial capability and financial well-being. Priority will be given to projects that use data from the National Financial Capability Study (see and other existing data sets.
The Grant Guidelines specify eligibility requirements and other criteria. Please review the guidelines carefully. For more information, please visit:

U.S. Treasury | myRA: A Simple, Safe, Affordable Retirement Savings Account

The U.S. Department of the Treasury will develop the myRASM (“My Retirement Account”) program, offering a new retirement savings account for individuals looking for a simple, safe, and affordable way to start saving. Individuals will be able to open accounts with no start-up cost and contribute to them every payday. myRA balances will never go down and there will be no fees. Initially, myRA will be made available through employers and the investment held in the account will be backed by the U.S. Treasury. 

myRA will be Roth IRA accounts available to anyone who has an annual income of less than $129,000 a year for individuals and $191,000 for couples. myRA will be for individuals who do not have access to an employer-sponsored retirement savings plan. myRA is designed for individuals who want an investment with a low opening amount. 

The myRA investment will earn interest at the same variable rate as the Government Securities Investment Fund in the Thrift Savings Plan for federal employees. Individuals may voluntarily roll over myRA to private-sector retirement accounts at any time. Once myRA reaches $15,000, or after 30 years, the balance will be transferred to a private-sector retirement account. Treasury will finalize transfer procedures when it launches the myRA program later this year. 

Once the accounts are available, employees of participating employers will start by signing up for a myRA  account online. Then they will set up payroll direct deposit with their employers to have a portion of their paychecks ($50, $25, $7—any amount!) deposited into their myRAs automatically every payday.

  • Deposits automatic every payday
  • Portable – not tied to a single employer 
  • Contributions can be withdrawn tax free
  • Earnings can be withdrawn tax free after five years and the saver is 59½ 
  • Will never go down in value
  • Low risk 
  • Information will be private and secure 
  • Backed by the U.S. Treasury 
  • No cost to open an account 
  • Contribute every payday ($50, $25, $7—any amount!)
  • No fees
  • Roth IRA tax advantages
Treasury will begin rolling out myRA in late 2014. 

myRA will be free and easy for employers to make available to employees. Employers may distribute myRA information but will not administer employee accounts, contribute to them, or match employee contributions. On payday, employers will send a direct deposit to participating employees’ myRAs.

Contact for more information: please contact the myRA team at or call (800) 553-2663. Or, visit
Financial Capability and Asset Building

Project Overview
The Center for Social Development at Washington University in St. Louis (CSD) is fortunate to have support from Wells Fargo Advisors to undertake a three-year project (2012-2015) in Financial Capability and Asset Building (FCAB). This initiative builds on CSD’s definition of financial capability as both the knowledge to make optimal financial decisions and the access to appropriate and beneficial financial services. FCAB builds on CSD’s prior research, policy, and financial product leadership in asset building for the entire population. The aim of FCAB is to increase financial capability, particularly among low-and-middle income households and households of color. The major pathway for FCAB is to address the wide gap in professional training of practitioners who serve low- and moderate-income households.
Background and context. Social work, home economics, and other applied professions emerged during periods of economic and social strain. These professions were a response to rising industrialization and urbanization, which resulted in rapid economic and social change, creating greater rifts between rich and poor, native-born and immigrants, and people of different religious faiths (Addams, 1893b). Most of the problems encountered by early social workers and home economists resulted from poverty and service to the poor dominated professional practice at the turn of the 20th Century.
As educational programs in social work grew, courses and publications focused on household economic life, including topics such as household earnings, budgeting, spending, and saving. Unfortunately, by mid-century, the focus on family finances was largely abandoned by both social workers and home economists. Home economists turned their attention toward homemaker practices such as nutrition, cooking, and sewing, and social workers shifted their attention toward psychological interpretations more than practical problem solving (Specht & Courtney, 1995).
Today, no profession adequately addresses financial capability of low- and moderate-income populations. Furthermore, no profession adequately trains practitioners to address family financial challenges on the scale required during an economic downturn. In the wake of the mortgage crisis, high unemployment, and rising inequality, the time is right for a revival and renewal of professional interest and commitment to financial capability.

For more information, please visit:
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