Esther’s Story

For the past few years, Esther has filed her taxes at one of the Clinic’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) sites in Queens.

In 2017, she made an appointment with a financial coach because she wanted to build credit but wasn’t sure how. Esther is undocumented and provides independent cleaning services as her main source of income.

During the session, Esther shared about her three-year-old son who she someday hoped to send to college, and learned of the option to direct a portion of her tax refund to a 529 college savings account. In doing so, Esther would instantly increase her son’s probability of attending and graduating from college.

It was a no-brainer. This past April when Esther filed her taxes, she and 1,600 of her fellow New Yorkers directed over $1 million to 529 college savings accounts, setting their loved ones on the path toward higher education.

Esther continues to meet with her coach to build credit and work toward her long-term goal of sending her son to college. In her last meeting, Esther told her coach, “I made an appointment for one thing, but I left with much more.”

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