BOSTON, April 15, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- For many families, the IRS tax filing day marks the best period all year for financial goal setting – whether it's setting money aside for a summer vacation, saving for a child's education or planning for their retirement. But especially for financially vulnerable families, the goal of saving for the future often conflicts with more immediate needs. These families often find themselves one illness or car repair away from financial crisis.
To promote saving at tax time, the Boston-based nonprofit Doorways to Dreams (D2D) Fund has launched the nationwide SaveYourRefund promotion. Tax filers who save at least $50 of their federal refund using IRS Form 8888 can enter the promotion by April 15, 2013. SaveYourRefund has awarded 10 weekly prizes of $250 and will award one $25,000 Grand Prize on April 19, 2013. By offering large prize incentives and the chance to tell winners' stories through videos and social media, SaveYourRefund has transformed the often stressful, anxious, moment of tax filing and the serious, earnest act of savings into a time of hope and optimism.
In 2009, President Obama announced that saving tax refunds would become easier, as tax filers would now be able to purchase savings bonds – for themselves or others, including children – by simply checking a box on the tax form. This expanded "Tax Time Savings" policy was a victory for low-income households, whose tax refunds are typically the largest lump sum of income they'll have access to all year. In the three years since its inception, the expanded "Tax Time Savings" policy has generated more than $40 million in savings for 100,000 Americans.
"Winners of the SaveYourRefund promotion told us that it played a part in their decisions to save," said Timothy Flacke, executive director of D2D. "We wanted to give families an incentive, and also make saving a fun, positive experience.
Supported by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), D2D targets vulnerable families to help them set and follow through on their savings goals through access to specialized financial services and innovative products and programs, like promoting the "Tax Time Savings" policy.
"Americans receive more than $300 billion in tax refunds from the IRS every year. For hard-working families, federal refunds are often the largest lump sum of income they receive," said Alandra Washington, director of family economic security programs at WKKF. "The SaveYourRefund promotion encourages people to save as little as $50, which can jump start a year-round commitment to saving, even if it's a little at a time."
Learn more about the new winners at https://www.saveyourrefund.com/winners.
For more information about the SaveYourRefund promotion, visit http://www.saveyourrefund.com.
About IRS Form 8888
Since 2007, tax filers have had the option to send part of their federal refunds directly to a savings product through a "split refunds" option available on IRS Form 8888. Beginning in 2010, on this same form, refund recipients could request that a part of their refunds be issued in inflation-protected U.S. Savings Bonds—either for themselves or for others (including children).
About Doorways to Dreams Fund
The Boston-based Doorways to Dreams Fund (D2D), a non-profit founded by former Harvard Business School professor Peter Tufano, has long championed savings bonds as a tool for helping low-and moderate-income savers. D2D's mission is to strengthen the financial security and opportunity of low- and moderate-income consumers, and the organization views encouraging saving as a critical strategy to advance that important mission. For more information, visit http://www.d2dfund.org.
SOURCE Doorways to Dreams Fund