2020 Success Story: IDA Programs

Sonya came to the Individual Development Account (IDA) program in after completing Lifeline’s Supportive Housing program. When Sonya originally came to Lifeline it was to work toward a certification for a healthcare career. Sonya wanted to enroll in a college program when she finished and wished to continue her education in engineering. She applied for the IDA program with education as her asset and began taking classes; working toward her degree.

Sonya is currently enrolled at Cleveland State University in a chemistry program and doing well. Her education journey is not quite finished and she is applying for a second time in the IDA program to help continue toward her goal of a career in chemistry.

 “The IDA program has been a really great benefit for me. I’m currently pursuing my Bachelors in Chemistry at CSU and worrying about how to pay for school can be stressful,” said Sonya. “As a single mom, the benefit of the program has made a huge difference. It’s not just a way to pay for school, it helps establish a savings habit as well. The investment in the success of my academic and financial future is something I truly appreciate.”

“Sonya is a great example of how the IDA program helps participants move toward self-sufficiency and achieving their goals. She identified a goal and is building on each previous success to achieve it,” said Lifeline program coordinator Tiffany Menosky. “She is well on her way to seeing her dream come true. Her experience in the IDA program has given her the basic skills to establish a plan for her education and her career, but more importantly it has identified resources to allow her to continue to grow. After spending time with Sonya and getting to know her, I have witnessed someone who exhibits a great deal of fortitude and drive toward the pursuit of her dreams. I believe that that she will follow her goal to success.”

The IDA program is offered by Lifeline, Inc. in partnership with the Ohio CDC Association. The IDA participant saves to a predetermined goal and completes financial empowerment and specific asset training while saving. At completion they receive a match amount of 8:1 for their asset purchase. There are three assets that a participant can choose to work towards. They are able to choose a down payment for home ownership, education or capitalization for a micro business.