Family Financial Capability

Family Financial Capability

NALCAB recognizes that culturally and linguistically relevant Family Financial Capability programs are crucial for unlocking the economic potential in diverse communities of color, especially for individuals who are new to the U.S. financial system, and those who have limited English proficiency.

These households often face barriers to conducting basic financial transactions, building a credit history, accumulating savings, and accessing credit on fair and affordable terms. To address these realities, NALCAB works with members to create and strengthen Financial Capability programs to build knowledge and create a pathway to resources that allow consumers to understand credit and credit scores, access financial services and products, and identify and avoid predatory and discriminatory practices.

What We Do

NALCAB recognizes that culturally and linguistically relevant financial capability programming is crucial for unlocking the economic potential in diverse communities of color, particularly for individuals who are new to the US financial system, and those who have limited English proficiency. NALCAB and its community-based partners understand the pressing need to create awareness and a pathway to resources that allow consumers to understand:

  • Credit and credit scores,
  • Accessing financial services and product,
  • Identifying and avoiding predatory and discriminatory practices,
  • Understanding consumer rights in the financial services marketplace
  • More fully integrate financial capability services into existing asset building programs
  • Develop and utilize a high-quality and culturally-relevant financial capability curriculum
  • Expand access to safe and affordable financial products, including credit-building tools
  • Identify opportunities to increase staff knowledge and skills
  • Implement intake, tracking and measurement tools to gauge and communicate project impact
  • Connect to nationally recognized resources to enhance program effectiveness
  • Leverage partnerships with local public, private and nonprofit organizations
  • Plan for program sustainability

Current Project Highlights

In 2017, with support from The Prudential Foundation, NALCAB is partnering with four member organizations and the Credit Builders Alliance in the Financial Capability through Rent Reporting pilot program. Through December 2018, NALCAB will work with these owner/operators of multifamily rental housing, serving primarily LMI Latino and immigrant communities, to build their capacity to provide financial coaching services to residents and to begin reporting rental payments to credit agencies. Reporting rental payments, offered in conjunction with financial coaching, offers low­income renters an opportunity to build credit as a financial asset. NALCAB believes this promising practice will have a particular benefit in LMI Latino communities due the high percentage of households with thin credit or no credit. NALCAB anticipates that this pairing of services will result in significant impacts on the financial wellness of LMI households, proving an opportunity to build credit history and financial capability skills, directly impacting residents’ ability to get and stay ahead in today’s economy.

With support from Wells Fargo and Citi Foundation, NALCAB implemented pilot programs in 2015 and 2016 to advance Family Financial Capability in under-served, LMI Latino and immigrant communities. NALCAB provided six local non-profit organizations with grants, technical assistance and training to integrate culturally-relevant financial capability services with other asset building

services, including business development services, housing counseling and workforce development. NALCAB supported the participating organizations to augment or develop culturally relevant financial capability curriculum, open access for their clients to safe and affordable financial products, including credit building tools and savings products, as well as strengthen their data collection and impact assessment capabilities. During the pilot, the local organizations provided culturally relevant financial capability services to over 1,300 clients. 204 clients increased their credit score and 131 clients achieved a credit score of 650 or higher. Total client savings during this period were over $150,000. During this period, NALCAB also delivered trainings for the staff of more than 50 organizations from across the country on Financial Capability and Service Integration.

Success Story

Latin American Economic Development Corporation – Charlotte, NC

With NALCAB grant and technical assistance support through the Financial Capability pilot program, the Latin American Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC) in Charlotte, NC, successfully developed and implemented the brand new Prosperity Builder program. Prosperity Builder is a 3 week, 12 hour workshop series that integrates financial capability services, small business development and leadership training for Latino entrepreneurs.

LAEDC developed the curriculum, in English and Spanish, by drawing from the Wells Fargo Hands on Banking and Wells Fargo Works for Entrepreneurs curriculums and adapting it with other culturally-relevant curriculum resources. With a small staff and limited resources, LAEDC built partnerships with community organizations to augment their capacity. Partnerships included the Latin American Chamber of Commerce and the Camino Community Center who assisted with recruiting and provided facilities; Community Link, a non-profit housing provider who provided one-on-one financial and credit coaching; and local banks, who provided workshop facilitators for some of the sessions.

In the first year, LAEDC developed the program and delivered the workshop twice, serving 39 entrepreneurs. In the second year, LAECD continued to offer the original Prosperity Builder workshop, and expanded the program to provide more in-depth integration of financial capability and small business planning, serving a total of 40 entrepreneurs, with 60% of participants increasing their credit score. LAEDC has attracted local support for the program and plans to continue to expand the delivery of the workshop in the coming year.

Past Work

Over the past five years, NALCAB has implemented regionally-focused programs, including grant making, technical assistance and training. These programs have supported local organizations to provide culturally-relevant financial education, free income tax assistance and homebuyer preparation to more than 5,000 families. With a strong focus on immigrant communities, the NALCAB Network represents a national infrastructure for immigrant economic integration. These efforts were supported with multi-year investments from the Northwest Area Foundation, the Mary Reynolds Babcock Foundation, the Meadows Foundation and the Open Society Foundation.