Independent Financial believes in building strong, healthy communities, and has recognized how Junior Achievement-Rocky Mountain, Inc. (JA) is making a substantial difference in young people’s lives. They also believe in building on their impact in the communities they serve. During the month of February, Independent Financial is empowering others to double their gifts to JA by matching donations dollar for dollar up to $7,500 total in individual donations, which will help us reach an additional 400 students. JA seeks out mission-minded partners like Independent Financial, and rely on their support to keep our programs accessible to all students, offering kids financial lessons and workforce skills at no cost.
“Independent Financial was founded on the belief that we have a deep responsibility to solve problems and build strong, healthy communities,” says Brianna Adams, Assistant Vice President and Community Development Officer for Independent Financial in Colorado. “Through Junior Achievement, our local bankers have the opportunity to deepen their connection to the communities where they live, work, and play and to make an impact by preparing youth to navigate their financial futures.”
Collaborating with JA gives Independent Financial the ability to be innovative with their community support. Adams says, “From the very beginning, we intentionally worked to develop a shared understanding of each other’s organizations and ‘the big why’ that drives our work. That shared understanding has allowed us to be flexible, fluid, and creative regarding volunteer and partnership opportunities while always keeping the end goal front and center – it’s about the kids.”
JA and Independent Financial both hope that by matching gifts, individuals in the community will be inspired to get involved too. JA’s manager of foundations of individual giving, Emily Maurer, says, “Individual donors are a critical part of providing these meaningful experiences. The nature of JA’s work is preventative and preparative in that we’re giving students tools and skills to avoid pitfalls and achieve success. So giving to JA is truly an investment—in young people, in our future. A matching opportunity, like what we received from Independent Financial, is such a gift because it provides an incredible incentive for individuals to give knowing that their impact will be doubled during this particular period!”
Adams agrees. “The opportunity to leverage our corporate support by using it as a match for individual donations allows us to multiply the impact of our gift and really aligns with our approach to philanthropy,” she says. “We are always looking for opportunities to be a ‘force multiplier’ and to bridge resources in the communities we serve.”