Experimental Design Details
Developed by the City’s Office of Financial Empowerment, the Boston Youth Credit Building Initiative brings together a number of key partners to help recruit participants, deliver the program, study the program, and provide funding. These include:
Educational and Community Based Organizations: To help with recruitment, OFE has engaged with a host of local educational and community based organizations that provide workforce development targeted at youth and young adults. These include BEST Corp. Hospitality Training Center, Boston Cares, Boston Day & Evening Academy, Boston Housing Authority, Boston Public Health Commission, Boston Division of Youth Engagement and Employment, Catholic Charities, CityYear, Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative, Hyde Park YCD, LISC AmeriCorps, Madison Park Housing Development, ROCA, Roxbury Community College, Roxbury YouthWorks, and YearUp.
Working Credit NFP: To implement the credit building program, OFE has contracted with Working Credit NFP to deliver its credit building model, including access to its innovative CW‐3™ credit building product, a secured loan and savings program. Working Credit is a nonprofit
organization that brings credit building services and products to workers in the form of an employee benefit. The organization helps individuals establish and sustain strong credit scores, and then use those scores to reduce personal or household expenses inflated by poor credit or no credit. The overall goal of Working Credit is to reduce financial stress among employees, so they can concentrate on their jobs and advance in the workplace.
Working Credit’s program is a comprehensive intervention that is tailored to the individual needs of the participant and requires minimal assistance from the educational and community based organizations for implementation. OFE was responsible for all recruitment activities, and recruited most of the study participants from these organizations at a pre‐arranged meeting where the program was explained in a
five minute presentation and application forms were distributed. Additional individuals were recruited by OFE directly via a marketing campaign. Once all applications were collected, individuals were randomly assigned to the treatment and control groups, and OFE invited participants to a one hour credit building workshop and a one‐on‐one counseling session, often at or near their work site. Working Credit then stepped in to deliver its credit building program. They delivered their credit building workshop, and signed up participants for the one‐on‐one counseling, either immediately after the workshop or at a later date. Through the counseling process it was determined whether an
individual participant was eligible and would benefit from enrolling in the CW‐3™ credit building product.