The universe of anti-poverty programs is vast. Here is what sets Compass apart:

A first-in-kind program

Like many other asset-development organizations, Compass got started by providing matched savings accounts, also known as individual development accounts. In 2010, we identified the federal Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) program as a broad, scalable market to which we could apply our core competencies, and became the first nonprofit organization in the country to design and implement an asset-building, public-private partnership model for FSS.

A relentless focus on savings and assets


Compass is singularly focused on delivering programs that empower families to build savings and financial capabilities as a pathway out of poverty. This clear and concise focus allows us to iterate and expand on what really works and drive at the best possible approach to the problems we seek to address.

A first-in-class approach to financial coaching

We are raising the bar for the quality of financial services available to low-income families. Compass’s team of financial coaches includes several certified financial services professionals including Certified Financial Planners (CFP) and CFA® Charterholders. Coaches receive ongoing professional development from senior staff. 

A culture of aspiration

Compass promotes a culture of aspiration and achievement. Our first goal in coaching is to help families define their dreams for the future. We believe in the families we serve, and families feel that support. We often hear stories from families of their trials navigating the bureaucratic rules and degrading elements of programs designed to support them. We aim to provide a qualitatively different experience to families,  and we believe it is a critical part of what makes our work successful.

A commitment to excellence

We strive for excellence in every aspect of our work. Our approach to savings and asset building for low-income families draws on leading research, intensive data-collection, analysis and evaluation, and iteration on our programs to get at what really works. We have developed a reputation for focused, disciplined execution.