About Sandra (How Savers Are Selected)
As a single mother of five, Sandra was determined to find a career that would provide for her family, so she attended beauty school and went on to earn a certificate in massage therapy in 1995. After working as a hair stylist for 8 years, Sandra took a leap and rented a station at a barbershop in her neighborhood. Within eight months she had an established client base and decided to open her own Spanish-speaking salon. She has been running Sandra’s, a full service salon, for three years and is breaking even on the business, but she struggles to make ends meet. Sandra joined the matched savings program to save money for her business. By keeping her salon open late every Wednesday, Sandra saved an extra $1000 last year and continues to save $120 every month in the matched savings program. She has already invested about $1500 of savings and matching funds in beauty supplies to keep her salon running. Sandra’s long-term vision is to open a second salon in Hayward and, eventually, to open a chain of salons in the Bay Area. The matched savings program and financial education have helped her set goals to turn her dream into reality. When Sandra is not busy running her salon, where she works from 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., seven days a week, or spending time with her family, she plans for the future. Sandra advises keeping personal and business finances separate, investing rather than spending savings, and “never giving up when it gets hard.” As she prepares for her next client, Sandra smiles and says, “Keep trying and you’ll make it happen.”
UPDATE: As of fall 2009, Sandra continues to save each month (only a few hundred dollars to go) and she has invested an additional $1,200 in savings and match to purchase supplies for her salon. Her increased inventory is allowing her to serve more clients, increasing her revenues.
People who have Contributed to this Saver
I'm a developer on SaveTogether and have been working on the 1.0 version for the last couple of months. It's been a great experience, not to mention an honor. Thanks Tom, Dylan and Blair!
I have witnessed matched savings programs change the lives of low-income and very poor working families for almost 20 years, first with pioneering IDA programs in the early 1990s, then with the American Dream Policy Demonstration, the subsequent flowering of...
I've been working with Opportunity Fund and the creators of Save Together for the past half year to launch this site. It's been an amazing experience seeing how a passionate and determined group can bring a good idea to fruition.
My family was poor growing up. We had parents who knew how to motivate, and knew what was important in life. One was education and another is perseverence. And we had some financial help along the way, too. I first...