Direct Cash Aid

Direct Cash Aid puts money directly in the hands of recipients to make their own decisions about how they wish to spend it.

Why Direct Cash Aid?

4-CT believes in direct cash aid for a few reasons:

1. It gives recipients the autonomy and dignity to choose for themselves how to best improve their lives.
2. Cash allows for flexibility as recipients can spend the funds on one or more things that may help their situation.
3. It’s fast. 4-CT distributes direct cash aid using pre-paid debit cards that can be loaded remotely. Within minutes of being approved for a card, recipients can access their funds.

Inspired by other COVID-19 relief efforts across the country like the Mayor’s Fund for Los Angeles’ Angeleno Card and the NYC COVID-19 Immigrant Emergency Relief Fund, 4-CT designed the 4-CT Card, a pre-paid debit card, to confront the financial difficulties that individuals and families faced during the COVID-19 pandemic. Three years later, 4-CT still believes in the power of direct cash aid and is constantly exploring the new things that the 4-CT Card can do for communities across CT

The 4-CT Card– How It Works:

1. 4-CT identifies community based organizations and health centers (“partner organizations”) that provide exemplary services to individuals and families throughout Connecticut.

2. Based on the needs of their community, the partner organizations each create a direct cash aid program and identify people in need of assistance.

3. Once an individual is identified, a staff member at the partner organization fills out a short and simple form that is shared with 4-CT.

4. Card amounts are customizable and once the card is distributed, it is loaded remotely by 4-CT staff by the end of the same business day.

5. 4-CT anonymously tracks spend data by store type/category in the aggregate to better understand the needs and preferences of card recipients. This information helps us improve our programs.