Financial Partnerships / Delta DREAMS
Delta DREAMS (Dollars Reinvested in Education and Assests to Maximize Success) is a community-driven collaboration between Delta Health Alliance and regional banks, economic development agencies, service groups, housing authorities, community representatives, universities, and faith-based partners all united by a shared vision of increasing eco-nomic self-sufficiency for low-income families living in rural communities. Funding partners include Guaranty Bank and Trust Company, Mississippi State University and Delta State University.
Delta DREAMS operates this way: Students, working with Delta State University, complete a financial literacy course to help them become savvier with money by learning how to reduce debt, establish credit, save money and change poor financial behavior. Second, students must commit to saving $625 over six months to be eligible for a 4 to 1 match through Mississippi State and the federal government for a total of $2,500 that can be used for college tuition and fees.
Delta DREAMS is about changing behavior when it comes to money. DHA manages the program, collecting the necessary information to ensure that students are staying on track and meeting their financial goals.
The requirements to receive match funds to assist with post-secondary education are:
- Must be a Mississippi resident
- Must have earned income
- Must participate in an IDA (Individual Development Account) program for a minimum of 6 months and make regular minimum deposits
- Complete a financial literacy course including obtaining certification
- Household income must fall under twice the US Federal Poverty Guidelines established by the Department of Health and Human Services.