Amidst growing income inequality and wealth gaps, the Trust and Invest Collaborative seeks to transform social service systems to improve the lives and well-being of families and children currently living with low-incomes.
We believe the key to real change for low-income families is universal trust and investment. While there will always be a need for a safety net, we believe families living with low-incomes have been underestimated and underinvested in.
Family Independence Initiative (FII) has partnered with the Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA) to conduct a three-year study evaluating the effect of providing families with social and financial capital.
Goals & Activities
A team of academic evaluators at Harvard Business School (HBS) will lead a robust independent evaluation utilizing a randomized control trial approach. Families who earn less than approximately 150% of the poverty line or receive economic assistance through DTA will be given the option to enroll in the study. To ensure academic rigor and isolate cause and effect, participants will be enrolled in one of three different groups with at least 400 households per group:
- Families that are enrolled in FII, that is, receiving both social and direct cash benefits.
- Families that receive only the social component of FII.
- A control group which receives neither the social nor direct cash component of FII.
All three groups will complete surveys throughout the project and be compensated for their time and expertise. In addition, the DTA will provide anonymized comparison group data for families that have received DTA benefits in the past throughout Massachusetts.
After the three-year study, DTA and FII will have scientific data to advance the social services sector’s understanding about the types of outcomes families living with low-incomes can achieve when given access to financial capital and are provided the environment to turn to their own social networks.
The Trust and Invest Collaborative Counts many partners and community participants among its members. If you have interest in joining or supporting this landmark initiative, please let us know. Together, we will make a positive impact not only for Massachusetts residents, but for families across the country
This project is funded through the support of our philanthropic partners and the generosity of individual donors. Your gift to FII-Greater Boston today, directly supports Trust and Invest Collaborative.