Matched Child Savings Accounts in Low-Resource Communities: Who Saves?

Leyla Karimli, Fred M. Ssewamala, Torsten B. Neilands, Mary Mc Kernan McKay

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


This study examines variations in saving behavior among poor families enrolled in a Child Savings Account program for orphaned and vulnerable school-going children in Uganda. We employ multilevel analyses using longitudinal data from a cluster-randomized experimental design. Our analyses reveal the following significant results: (1) given the average number of months during which the account was open (18 months), families saved on average, USD 54.72, which, after being matched by the program (2:1 match rate) comes to USD 164.16—enough to cover approximately five academic terms of post-primary education; (2) children’s saving behavior was not associated with quality of family relations; it was, however, significantly associated with family financial socialization; (3) family demographics were significantly associated with children’s saving behavior in the matched Child Savings Account program; and (4) children enrolled in some schools saved better compared to children enrolled in other schools within the same treatment group.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)53-64
Number of pages12
JournalGlobal Social Welfare
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Child savings accounts
  • Children and adolescents
  • Low-resource communities
  • Suubi-Maka
  • Uganda


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