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Orlando, Fla. – Early findings from a UNC Center for Community Capital study show clearly that low-income people can learn to save by participating in well-designed savings programs, center research Kim R. Manturuk told attendees convened for the Annual Conference on Financial Education April 18-20.

Manturuk’s presentation, “Learning by Doing: Lessons on Financial Education from $aveNYC,” outlined the findings from her study team’s evaluation of the results and impact of a matched savings program aimed at very low-income families in New York City.

In-depth interviews with participants in the program revealed more positive attitudes about saving following program participation, Manturuk said. Participants also talked about feeling more empowered or able to save money.

“Evidence suggests that people can learn financial literacy through participating in matched savings programs,” said Manturuk. “In order for such programs to be effective, it is important to focus on fostering efficacy and confidence in one’s ability to save.”

Manturuk is senior research associate in financial services for the UNC Center for Community Capital. She leads a research and policy team that works to understand what products, services and conditions promote and inhibit wealth creation and economic mobility among low-wealth families and communities.

Her presentation is available online at

Consumer financial services is a key area of expertise and research for the UNC Center for Community Capital, the leading center for research and policy analysis on the transformative power of capital on households and communities in the United States. Part of the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the center offers data and analysis that helps policymakers, advocates and the private sector find sustainable ways to expand economic opportunity to more people more effectively. For more information, visit or call (919) 843-2140.

Topics(s): Financial Capability, Financial Inclusion
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