STRIDES (Systems, Tools, Resources, & Ideas for Developing Economic Success)

We provide coaching, education and develop resources that facilitates behavioral change in related to the psychology of money.

Photo of Daphne Wright
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Eligibility

  • I am not an employee of BNY Mellon, or an immediate family member of a BNY Mellon employee
  • I am over 18 years of age
  • My organization is incorporated as a non-profit, for-profit, or hybrid organization, or I have a partner that is incorporated and could accept funds on my behalf
  • I have already piloted my initiative and have some initial evidence of impact
  • My organization is headquartered and creating impact in the United States

Gender

  • Woman

Where are you making a difference?

Washington, DC (20008)

Focus Areas (required)

  • Business & Social Enterprise
  • Development & Prosperity
  • Peace & Harmonious Relations

Date Started

5/01/2012

Organization Type

  • for-profit

Project Stage: Select the description below that best applies to your approach.

  • Start-Up (first few activities have happened)

Budget

  • $50k - $100k

Website or social media URL(s) (optional)

https://www.myfinancialstrides.com

1.Founding Story: Share a story about the "Aha!" moment that led the founder(s) to get started or the story of how you saw the potential for this to succeed.

I was inspired at a young age to my vocational calling. I had seen an account statement, where my father's investment earnings doubled his account value. I wanted to help people with their finances. I earned a degree in Finance. My first financial services job was marketing the exact 403(b) product that had inspired me. Assigned to an African American school district, I saw a common disconnect between people's economic desires and their financial mindsets and behaviors. The question of why, and of how to bridge the disconnect bothered me until the field of behavioral economics emerged with discovered insights. As I incorporated the insights in my advising, I saw clients improve how they focused on their economic decisions an choices.

2. The Problem: What problem are you helping to solve?

A natural resistance to changing behavior is an impediment to economic improvement. Behavioral economics research, dealing with how the mind works, reveals why it's so difficult for people to alter choices that improve economic outcomes. Traditional financial education is premised upon a fallacy that financial knowledge should change behavior. Behavioral change, however, must engage focus on mindfulness, mental shifts, & planned intentions.

3. Your Solution: How are you planning to solve this problem? Share your specific approach.

Our approach helps facilitate the process of change. We have a patented behavarioal methodology for a financial planning software that's based on cognitive science and incorporates faith-centric themes. A coaching methodology helps people reframe perspectives in addressing financial challenges and retrain their thought patterns to focus on planned actions and intentioned outcomes.

Our approach helps deflect initial focus from intuitive, quantitative aspects of finances and redirects the brain's train of thought towards qualitative matters, often not consciously examined.

This mindfulness process helps uncover incongruence between values, goals, attitudes, priorities, decisions, and use of resources to reveal personal inconsistencies. It evokes conscious thought of what must change and unlocks perspectives to view personal choices and decisions in a new light.

Behavioral science research proves how our cognitive processes require unambiguous thought and clear intentions in order for mental choices to move us from default behaviors to new deliberate actions. Awakening consciousness to hidden issues leads to clarity of how redirected thoughts and actions can bring change.

4. Example: Please walk us through a specific example of how your solution is working to solve the problem.

Software Blueprint: User completes assessments about personal values, money attitudes, financial choices, & money behavior patterns. Quantitative data is collected on financial aspects of their economic lives: income, expenses, assets, debts, and monetary needs of goals. Based on behavioral economics research, a profile is determined for each of 4 key categorical areas that impact money decisions: values, attitudes, behaviors, and resources. Each profile is evaluated independently and compared to the others for incongruencies that hinder goal achievement and economic well-being.
Software generated feedback identifies such things as conflicts between values & goals, attitudes & decisions, or perceptions & actual behavior. Practical advice and scripturally relevant insights address inconsistencies and outlines a plan of action for focusing on changes that can improve outcomes.

5a. Too many people in the U.S. have unmet needs for financial products and services. How is your work reaching a population(s) that is currently underserved? If it is not reaching an underserved population yet, how might it in the near future?

As partners with Howard Univ. School of Divinity, we're part of a grant initiative supported by the Association of Theological Schools to improve financial literacy for seminarians. Our coaching is part of HUSD's teaching model of "Each One Teach One" that focuses on preparing pastoral leaders to share financial literacy with their predominantly African American congregations & community. Seminarians and alumni are engaging the education & coaching, and embracing the program's broader focus.

5b. Please specify if the population you are reaching is underserved due to any of the following characteristics:

  • race/ethnicity

6. Marketplace: Who else is addressing the same problem? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

Other organizations focus on helping address financial behavior changes. From the perspective the clergy, the programs we have seen developed in by other seminary schools participating in the initiative have not been as comprehensive nor focused on broadening tools beyond what is helping seminarians improve financial literacy.

7. Impact: How has your project made a difference so far?

We had a total of 8 students and alumni enrolled in our pilot financial coaching program. Most students expected the typical financial consulting experience, dealing primarily with monetary issues, such as debt, credit, savings, etc. All participants were pleasantly surprised upon engaging the life coaching process.

Over the five sessions, all participants had felt that they had had a mental shift that allowed them to overcome the attitudes and thinking that kept them feeling stuck in their circumstances. They understood reasons why they were having challenges in their finances, and recognized that had the answer to actionable solutions. Most were able to break hindering habits and develop new financial habits. Several had financial milestones, such as paying off car notes, paying off loans, & moving forward on a house purchase.

8a. Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling your impact?

With an online faith-centric financial education and coaching tool, we are able to help pastors of predominately Black churches implement educational programs in their churches through licensing our product. This product can be used as a curriculum tool in the literacy efforts of these institutions. In Washington, DC alone, which is where we’re based, we’ve identified 4 wards (wards 4, 5, 7, & 8) that each exceed a Black population of 55% and estimate at least 350 Black churches across the 4 wards. We plan to target the larger churches in the area first.

8b. If applicable, which of the following scaling strategies have you launched?

  • Large Scale Partnerships
  • Trainings, Consultation

9. Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

In partnership with Society for Financial Education & Professional Development, we are working on two additional grant awards supported by the Association of Theological Schools Foundation to research economics issues affecting African American clergy and to see how HUSD’s programs may be expanded to other member institutions. We believe that the coaching software may be a program that other ATS members schools can use as part of curriculums in addressing financial literacy initiatives.

10. Team: What is the current composition of your team (types of roles, qualifications, full-time vs. part-time, board members, etc.), and how do you plan to evolve the team’s composition as the project grows?

Daphne is the founder, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ Professional, CPA, certified in Applied Postitve Psychology Life Coaching, and a Financial Educator
Kayla is co-owner and program developer with a bacground in neuroscience
Joan is our part-time adminstrative associate
Society for Education Education & Professional Development - Marketing and Outreach Expansion

Help Us Support Diversity! Part 1 - Which of the following categories do you identify with? (optional)

  • Black or African American (for example: African American, Jamaican, Haitian, Nigerian, Ethiopian, Somalian, etc)

Help Us Support Diversity! Part 2 - Do you identify as part of any of the following underrepresented communities? (optional)

  • Communities of color

How did you hear about this challenge?

  • Ashoka page or contact

Evaluation results

4 evaluations so far

1. Overall, would you champion this entry as a excellent example to move forward to the next phase of the challenge and become a semifinalist?

Yes, absolutely! - 25%

Yes/maybe - 75%

Maybe - 0%

Maybe/no - 0%

No - 0%

2. Is this entry INNOVATIVE?

Yes, absolutely! - 75%

Yes/maybe - 25%

Maybe - 0%

Maybe/no - 0%

No - 0%

3. Is this entry IMPACTFUL on financial wellbeing?

Yes, absolutely! - 25%

Yes/maybe - 50%

Maybe - 25%

Maybe/no - 0%

No - 0%

4. Is this entry SUSTAINABLE?

Yes, absolutely! - 0%

Yes/maybe - 50%

Maybe - 50%

Maybe/no - 0%

No - 0%

5. What are some of the HIGHLIGHTS of strengths of this entry?

Connection to underserved community - 25%

Clarity of Model - 25%

Clarity of Writing - 25%

Idea Originality - 100%

Understanding of the marketplace or sector - 75%

Impact measurement - 0%

Impact Potential - 75%

Financial Sustainability - 0%

Team - 75%

Partnerships - 50%

Potential to scale - 0%

6. What are some of the areas for IMPROVEMENT of this entry?

Connection to underserved community - 50%

Clarity of Model - 100%

Clarity of Writing - 50%

Idea Originality - 0%

Understanding of the marketplace or sector - 0%

Impact measurement - 100%

Impact Potential - 50%

Financial Sustainability - 100%

Team - 0%

Partnerships - 50%

Potential to scale - 100%

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