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Saving As A Family Partner Resource Packet

Written by Benjamin Moss · 20 July 2020

As the pandemic continues to impact our economy and daily lives, the need to save is more important than ever. As adults, and specifically working parents, are experiencing unprecedented stressors, we want to encourage and remind you that saving is a family affair. It will take everyone working together, including your children, to do what’s necessary to stay on a healthy financial path.

America Saves has created a new Partner Resource Packet focused on the theme of “Saving As A Family,” which includes social media posts, new blogs, a new budgeting tool, and other resources to share with your community. 


Social Media Posts:

Use the following social media posts to share with your community!

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We start kids young with almost everything— sports, school, so why not saving? Here are 5 Ways To Teach Kids How To Save At Home via @AmericaSaves https://bit.ly/3jqNlUT

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#SaveAsAFamily: Get creative by having low-cost family fun activities such as game nights, card games, (indoor or outdoor) movie nights, backyard campouts, and more. Get more ideas here: https://bit.ly/2Orz2Bd via @AmericaSaves

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When was the last time you performed a budget review? There’s no time like the present! Check out this Spending and Saving Plan tool from @AmericaSaves. https://bit.ly/3i4ykHA

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Saving as a family starts with setting a goal and making a plan to reach it. Let @AmericaSaves help you create a plan to reach your family’s savings goal! Take the pledge today: http://bit.ly/2dFhJf9


Social Media Conversation Starters:

Use these conversation starters to create dialogue and drive conversations with your community!

When is an appropriate time to start teaching your kids good saving habits? Do your kids know the value of saving money?

Is teaching your kids how to save difficult? Do you wish you had more examples of how to save as a family?

Have you created a budget to help your family save? Do you know how to properly create a budget?

Have you taken the America Saves Pledge? How has the America Saves Pledge helped you reach your savings goal?


Resources:

Spending and Saving Plan tool


New Blog Posts:

Creating a budget for your family

5 Ways To Teach Kids How To Save At Home


Videos:

Save as a Family || America Saves Week


Upcoming Events:

Financial Wellness in the Workplace: Help Your Employees Save Automatically in Just Five Easy Steps - Thursday, July 23, 2:00 pm Eastern Time, America Saves Facebook Page

#ThinkLikeASaver: Simple Strategies To Help You Save -  Save The Date | October 22

#ThinkLikeASaver: How Do I Pay Off Debt? - Save The Date | November 5

#ThinkLikeASaver: Saving For Major Life Milestones - Save The Date | November 19


From the Archives:

Saving is a Family Affair

Four Easy Ways to Make Saving a Family Affair

Saving as a Family

Six Fun Ways to Save as a Family

7 Free Family Fun Ideas to Try While Sheltering in Place

7 Banks, 5 Credit Unions Awarded the 2020 America Saves Designation of Savings Excellence

Written by Benjamin Moss · 25 June 2020

Financial Institutions recognized for exceptional achievement in promoting effective savings strategies

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 24, 2020
Kia Young, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Communications Manager, America Saves  

 

Washington, D.C: America Saves proudly announced its recipients of the 2020 Designation of Savings Excellence award. The 12 financial institutions that earned the distinct honor were chosen from over 200 banks and credit unions across the nation that participated in America Saves Week. 

In its sixth year, the America Saves Designation of Savings Excellence is awarded to financial institutions that displayed exceptional achievement by motivating individuals to take action toward becoming more financially stable. Those achievements include opening new savings accounts, increasing savings deposits, and creating an automatic savings plan.

Collectively, the 12 banks and credit unions that earned the award encouraged nearly 125,000 people to deposit $363,847,982 into new and existing savings accounts during America Saves Week 2020.

“Their extraordinary efforts to encourage and support their customers and members to save money and establish an automatic savings plan during America Saves Week deserves recognition and distinct honor, particularly as the COVID-19 pandemic reached a crisis stage just a few days after America Saves Week concluded,” said George Barany, Director of America Saves. “Because of their commitment to their communities, it’s possible the individuals and families they reached were better equipped to handle the many financial stressors that arose in the following days. We are proud to recognize and highlight the significant achievements of these 12 financial institutions.”

America Saves Week is an annual event that inspires Americans to assess their financial status and make a simple savings action plan that starts or increases their savings. The event is coordinated by America Saves, with input and planning support from over 35 organizations that include federal government agencies such as the FDIC, FEMA, and the Department of Labor, financial institutions like Bank of America, JPMorganChase, and Navy Federal Credit Union, as well as nonprofits and Cooperative Extension educators.

You can find the full list of partner organizations within our planning committee here:

 America Saves Week Planning Committee.

2020 America Saves Designation of Savings Excellence Recipients:

Banks
BancorpSouth Bank
Farmers Savings Bank
First Commonwealth Bank
Haddon Savings Bank
Southern Bancorp Bank
Synchrony Bank
WesBanco Bank

Credit Unions

Baylands Family Credit Union
Community Resource Federal Credit Union
Eaton Family Credit Union
New Horizons Credit Union
North East Welch Federal Credit Union

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About America Saves

America Saves is a campaign managed by the nonprofit Consumer Federation of America that uses the principles of behavioral economics and social marketing to motivate, encourage, and support low- to moderate-income households to save money, reduce debt, and build wealth. America Saves encourages individuals and families to take the America Saves pledge and organizations to promote savings year-round and during America Saves Week. Learn more at americasaves.org and americasavesweek.org.

 

COVID-19 Resources

Written by Benjamin Moss · 26 March 2020

Here is a list of savings resources to help during the Coronavirus crisis.

America Saves Articles

Pantry Shopping and Meal Planning Preparation Tips

7 Free Family Fun Ideas to Try While Sheltering in Place

Where To Get Financial Help During The COVID-19 Crisis

4 Steps to Spending Your Stimulus Check Wisely When You Don't Have An Emergency Fund

Stimulus Decision Tree

Download Decision Tree: PNG | PDF


Income Taxes

IRS Coronavirus tax relief extends payment/filing of taxes


 Financial Information

FINRA Foundation

National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC) Coronavirus Financial Toolkit

FDIC | Receiving IRS Economic Impact Payments


Mortgage Relief

Mortgage Relief Tracker: This site tracks federal, state, and private mortgage relief programs.


Scams

FTC


Student Loans

Federal Student Aid – You may be able to temporarily stop making payments

 

Website RFP

Written by Benjamin Moss · 24 June 2020

Questions and Answers will be posted here for public viewing.

Pre-Bid Zoom Meeting:

Tuesday, July 14th at 3:00 EST
Thank you to all who attended the Zoom Meeting!

 

Questions Submitted: 

1. Q - The project seems to be closer to 3-5 sites, is that correct?
    A -  Yes, it is more than a single site.  But, what we’d like to see is one main site that has the building blocks for all the other sites to be built upon.  So (preferably) - it could also be looked at 1 REALLY large framework that 5 sites will be built off of.
 
2. Q - There are extensive sections and complexity, have you considered what you want to keep and what you want to get rid of? 
A - Yes, but we would still like some input.  We do know of a couple of areas we would like to expand on, but we also know of a lot of areas that aren’t working and we are willing to part ways with those.
 
3. Q - What are the needs with content migration?
A - Content Migration - We are looking at migrating 500 of our top articles from AS and MS. There is a few other areas, but overall we are going to try to stay as minimal as possible.  We would like as much as possible to be done by the agency.  We will need to look at the redirect/SEO strategy - there are some high-performing pages that bring us the bulk of our organic traffic that will need attention.
 
4. Q - What are the needs of site membership?
A - Membership - So on our Split to Save (S2S) and America Saves Young Workers (ASYW) we have a membership option where they can log in and get some specific information behind a membership wall and changing some profile information. We are currently a mix of Joomla and WordPress - so there’s not much that is reusable from there.  We are up to keeping things as simple as possible and knowing this could be a tricky area, we can work to help out here if needed.
It is the same functionality on both sites (ASYS and S2S), and we are good at keeping it that way. They are currently in two separate WordPress/MySQL databases.  My current thought is to create this one type of site with membership and replicate it for both, sharing the design and structure from the main AS site as much as possible.
 
5. Q - What are the needs for the Local Campaign Site?
A - Local Campaigns - It’s essentially 2 pages for each campaign - one information page and one with a specific pledge.  It is a different group than the other S2S and ASYW.  I’d like to create one “master” local campaign “folder” in the content tree with these 2 pages in it.  Then Duplicate that folder for each local campaign. I’d give each campaign a media folder.  Then have a user/editor “Group” for permissions and give each campaign a User with permissions only in that content folder and that specific media folder.  I’d like this to be a separate installation from AS site - so in the off chance something gets missed and someone has more permission or something, it won’t affect the entire AS site.  We’d point local.americasaves.org to this.  I think this way, we wouldn’t have to replicate or build member functionality - but use the permissions and workflows built into Umbraco.
 
6. Note about America Saves Week: America Saves Week does have functionality for “Participants” - It would be great to have it where we can upload an excel/CSV to update the list.  Find the page here: https://americasavesweek.org/participating-organizations/
 
7. Q - Are the brand, logo and or design standards for America Saves defined in writing? If yes, can this be made available?
A - We haven’t actually established a written branding guideline yet.  We have colors, some consistent fonts and general guidelines established, but it’s not compiled at this point.
 
8. Q - Regarding training and knowledge transfer, is there a preference for live interactive training or reference documentation?
A - A mix of both written and live training would be preferred.  Written on some repetitive tasks that may require reference back to notes, along with an interactive overview of the site with questions allowed.
 
9. Q - Is there any information or data that will be used with the websites and is managed outside of the website through an external database, system, or service?
A - We are using a custom CRM system and that is probably changing soon to Dynamics, Salesforce, or CiviCRM.  It will hold our saver/partner data.
 
10. Q - Should the proposal include any options for future support or maintenance? 
A - That would be good as a separate line item with your suggestions for support and maintenance.
 
11. Q - For migrating the 500 top articles: how do you anticipate being able to flag these in the existing content so that they can be migrated? (in other words, if you have a few databases of 3000+ pieces of content, 500 of which need to be moved over, how will any migration script identify which ones to move? (or perhaps, they anticipate a manual process)  
A - Essentially, we will pull a Google Analytics report with the top 500 articles over the past year and that will be the list of what we migrate.  The sites are in Joomla - and you are welcome to build a script to more easily pull those articles over.
 
12. Q - For a single design to work across multiple sites, several different page templates/layouts will need to be designed and shared. How many such templates should the proposal consider?
A - We are anticipating 10-15 templates. Home page templates for sites, Article Landing Page Template, Sidebar (right and left), and full-page templates, a template where we can just past landing page code,  then I’m anticipating some other template that will be defined in the initial discovery phase.
 
13. Q - Is the WCAG/ADA initiative based primarily on legal requirements or an attempt to make the site as accessible as possible? E.G.  WCAG 2.1 came out in 2018 and provides necessary updates based on modern technologies that are used since the 2.0 spec was written 12 years ago. Pursuant to that: do you anticipate the 500 articles moved to be part of a WCAG review across all the necessary WCAG specifications?
A - WCAG 2.1 AA is what we are attempting to reach based on a mix of legal as well as ethical reasons to be as accessible as possible.
 
14. Q - What integrations with external systems like CRMs, email platforms, APIs, etc. are implicated by these 5 sites?
A - We are in the process of securing another CRM system.  At this time it is looking like it will be Dynamics, Salesforce or CiviCRM
 
15. Q - Are there holistic multi-lingual needs for the site? Other than individual pages as I see now?
A - We will look at moving some of our current pages that are already translated, but we are not currently looking at multi-lingual in Umbraco.
 
16. Q - One of your previously-answered questions on the RFP page, you mentioned the expectation that there will initially be one site launch, but that it would lay the groundwork for the other 4 sites. Can you elaborate on how that scope aligns with the expected budget? Are you looking for all 5 site launches to fit into your stated budget or just that initial phase?
A - See the answer to Question 1.  Regarding the budget, we will not automatically discredit a proposal for not being inside of our budget requirements and will evaluate all proposals equally to find the best fit for our overall needs.  Please feel free to continue to submit a proposal, keeping in mind your best possible price.  
 
17. Q - Can you provide some reasoning behind the requirement to use Bootstrap for the Front-end code? Is that a requirement so that it aligns with internal technical resources' current experience? Is it a framework that has passed muster with IT? Some other reasons?
A - We have experience with bootstrap and we understand that it already a part of the grid editor structure of Umbraco which we would like to use.  We can examine the use of other grid frameworks such as foundation if suggested.
 
18. Q - Can you describe the desired content approval/publishing workflow?
A - The approval workflow desired will be a simple writer to an editor approval workflow.  Writers can write and save content, but an editor to overview and publish the articles.
 
19. Q - How does the “Profile Center” work?
A - The profile center currently connects to a custom database application.  In the future, that functionality (if we have it) will be handled by our CRM.
 
20. Q - And can you talk a little more about how the login works? What can a user add/edit/delete and what are they accessing in their profile?
A - The current login on Split to Save and America Saves For Young Workers allows members to view a bit of information about their program and download content that is behind the login.  No subscription or other functionality.
 
21. Q - Do you have any direct relationships with Financial Institutions today to up sell/cross sell savings products?
A - We have and are appreciative of our many relationships with Financial Institutions.  As we are a non-profit and our funding is built on us being bias, we aren't looking for click-through revenue streams currently.

National Financial Capability Month

Written by Benjamin Moss · 25 March 2020

With the continued COVID-19 pandemic growing and everyday Americans feeling the ramifications of our economy slowing down in an effort to slow the spread, we are experiencing firsthand why saving for the unexpected and having a savings plan is crucial.

April is National Financial Capability Month, and there’s no better time for us to commit to supporting individuals and families in their quest to be more financially stable by saving successfully and reducing debt— even in a time of crisis.

In this month’s America Saves Partner Resource Packet you will find content that helps build financial literacy, including ready-to-use social media posts, graphics, blog posts and more.


Social Media & Blog Posts:

It’s National #FinancialCapability Month aka National #FinancialLiteracy Month. No matter what you call it, here are 3 actions you can take right now via @AmericaSaves:https://bit.ly/3afjHgl

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April is National #FinancialCapability Month! With many American households anxious about finances navigating the COVID-19 pandemic, here is a tip from @AmericaSaves: Continue to #SaveAutomatically. https://bit.ly/asautosave

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#SaveAutomatically by having your direct deposit split with a portion going to savings, or have your financial institution auto-transfer a set amount each pay period. #FinancialCapability tip via @AmericaSaves

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Need to dip into your #savings? Don’t feel guilty, that’s what your emergency fund is for. If you have automatic savings set up, you’ll meet your savings goal again in no time. #FinancialCapabilityMonth tip via @AmericaSaves

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Wondering the most responsible way to allocate extra money toward your financial goals? Try this tip from @AmericaSaves! #FinancialCapabilityMonth

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Having a good credit score is crucial to financial health! Don’t forget to make your payments on time, as a late payment can be detrimental to your credit score. Via @AmericaSaves #FinancialCapabilityMonth

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Being financially capable is more than having savings, it’s knowing the resources available so that you can make informed & effective decisions. @AmericaSaves created this list of resources for anyone who may need help during the COVID-19 Crisis.
https://americasaves.org/help-during-covid-19

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One of the first steps on the path of #FinancialCapability is understanding your relationship with money. Take the “What’s Your Money Personality?” Quiz from @AmericaSaves to get insight on your spending habits. https://bit.ly/asmoneyquiz

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Want a savings accountability partner? Take the @AmericaSaves Pledge and receive support that helps keep you focused on your savings goals via email, text, tips, and reminders:
http://bit.ly/aspledge #FinancialCapability #FinancialLiteracy

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Not only does reducing debt save you money, it frees up funds so that you can reach your other savings goals faster. Organizations like our partners over at @moneymanagement can help! https://bit.ly/2JdPYbw


Resources

America Saves Resources/Tools

  • Incorporate the America Saves Pledge in your community outreach: http://bit.ly/aspledge.
  • Request an Embeddable Pledge for your website by emailing us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
  • Request to become a Local Campaign partner of America Saves and get direct support from our team to champion savings in your local community.
  • Text to Pledge: Savers can take the America Saves Pledge via text message and receive support throughout their savings journey.

Download Save Automatically Flyer


Partner Organization Resources & Highlights

Videos:

University of Arkansas Save Automatically Video

Encourages you to make your savings automatic like other things around your home.

Effective Strategies for Saving Successfully
An online panel discussion among 3 banking executives with successful saving tips and sharing how their financial institutions are supporting individuals with saving.

Split to Save
Encourages you to split your direct deposit, having a portion going directly to a savings account.


Events:

April is Military Saves Month! To learn more and sign up to be a participating organization click here: Military Saves Month

From the Archives:

View the 2019 National Financial Capability Month Resource Packet

Tip of the Day

  • Written by Katie Bryan | November 18, 2013

    Save for #presents rather than relying on #credit http://ow.ly/pV4nN

Saver Tips and Stories View all »

Learning to Save

Written by Katie Bryan | October 28, 2013

Kisha Barns’s financial situation was undisciplined, unrestricted, and impulsive before she came into contact with her local America Saves campaign, Charlotte Saves.

Read more...

Starting and Continuing a Personal Finance Journey

Written by Sara Cooper | December 23, 2013

When Kiara Hardin, now a junior at Western Illinois University, became an intern with the Chicago Summer Business Institute during her sophomore year of high school, she began her personal finance journey. The program required participants to open a savings account.

Read more...

Meet Esmeralda: 2019 SaveYourRefund Grand Prize Winner

Written by Lindsay Ferguson | June 4, 2019

“I have a goal, and I am going to achieve that goal.” 2019 SaveYourRefund Grand Prize Winner Esmeralda says that savings has always been about achieving self-sufficiency amidst tremendous adversity. “It’s hard to pay myself first,” says Esmeralda, particularly when you have to anticipate emergency expenses like a broken down car.

Read more...