A savings club is a group of people who pool their savings by making regular contributions –weekly, biweekly, monthly – to a fund which is then paid out to each member of the group according to an agreed upon schedule.

Since the launch of our Savings’ Club last year, entrepreneurs at Ventures have been steadily saving for rainy days and business assets. In October 2016, the first Savings’ Club cohort, consisting of twelve passionate entrepreneurs, set a goal of saving $2,000 each. Eight months and nearly $51,231 later, Ventures was able to reward the cohort nearly $2,000 in matched savings checks!

Our entrepreneurs inspire us every day. This is why we wanted to create a motivating savings program to support business owners, helping them reach their financial goals. Just like the one-of-a-kind aspirations entrepreneurs at Ventures have, their reasons for saving are also unique. Some choose to save 10% of their income to prepare to pay business taxes. Others want to save for a specific asset such as a roaster or churner for a bakery business or to cover entry fees in an up-coming farmer’s market. Whatever the reason for saving, supporting the economic well-being of our entrepreneurs is essential. According to a recent report by The Federal Reserve System, 46% of respondents on a questionnaire measuring economic well-being indicate that they are not able to come up with $400 to cover a financial emergency. At Ventures, we know an unexpected expense can be a huge financial set-back and possibly derail business plans. This is why we decided to make it a priority to encourage saving by making it more fun and rewarding!

The current cohort of entrepreneurial savers is a group of 19 enrolled in our 12-week Financial Management Course. In this class, clients receive financial education and personal coaching on their finances, credit, business financials, bookkeeping systems, taxes, and licensing. In less than three months, the class has saved over $4,000 collectively. Each participant who saves at least $300 will receive a $50 check next month for their participation. Congratulations on your hard work Savings’ Club!

Special thanks to the Herbert Jones Foundation for funding our matched savings’ program and United Way of King County through AmeriCorps VISTA. To participate in a free incentivized savings program aimed at supporting low-income individuals, check out United Way of King County and their partnership with EARN!