A matched savings account, also known as an "Individual Development Account" or IDA, is a special savings account for people with low to moderate incomes. These accounts are designed to help families and individuals of modest means establish a pattern of regular saving and, ultimately, reach a specific financial goal. Typically, IDA savings and match money can be used to buy a house, pay for education, or start a small business. Several Montana credit unions, in partnership with MCUCD and other nonprofit groups, are participating in IDA programs across the state. Currently we are partnering with Rural Employment Opportunities on their new matched savings program and with Student Assistance Foundation's Montana Money Magic.
In 2010, MCUCD collaborated with the Student Assistance Foundation, along with Carroll College and the University of Montana, to launch the first Montana Education Savings Account (MESA) program. The MESA program was created for students pursuing higher education who need more funding than they receive through federal aid and family contribution. With student debt numbers rising above one trillion dollars in 2013, more than ever, students need innovative to cover college costs and reduce student debt. Leveraging from the first MESA program's success, MCUCD has expanded the MESA program to include Montana State University, Gallatin College, and Montana Tech.
A main goal of the MESA program is to provide each participant with a set of tools that will enable them to make well-informed choices and continue to build their assets long after the program ends. We believe that developing savings habits and increasing financial literacy now will be useful throughout a student's lifetime. For more information on the MESA program, click on the left-hand tabs.
Montana Credit Unions for Community Development (or MCUCD) is the award-winning, charitable arm of the Montana Credit Union Network. A state-wide nonprofit organization, MCUCD works together with the state's credit unions to improve the lives and financial independence of all Montanans.