Connect * Empower * Impact

2019 AFCPE® Research and Training Symposium

AFCPE Pre-Symposium: Sunday, November 17 - Tuesday, November 19
AFCPE Symposium: Tuesday, November 19 - Thursday, November 21
Schedule Subject to Change

Thursday, November 15th, 2018
Category: Low Income Populations
Achieving Financial Capability for All: What Will It Take?
Millions of U.S. families find themselves in precarious financial circumstances. When they want to build financial security for their family, they have few places to turn for guidance and support. While well-to-do families buy financial and legal advice and benefit from policies that build financial security, disadvantaged families make do largely on their own.
In searching for solutions, one resource has so far been largely overlooked: Tens of thousands of community-based organizations and their staff that deliver support and services to vulnerable populations. These professionals are in the organizations that serve people from all walks of life. They understand the many and complex challenges facing people living on a low income, and just as importantly, they also appreciate their strengths and resources.

These human service professionals can be mobilized to improve the financial capability of disadvantaged populations by providing basic financial guidance and counseling, linking families to financial benefits and low-cost financial services, helping families handle debt, and referring people for specialized financial and legal assistance. Along with financial professionals and others, they can inform the design of financial products, services, and policies to benefit vulnerable families. This will require integrating financial capability curricula in human service degree programs, and creating effective financial capability delivery systems. A huge challenge, but one that would enable social workers and other human service workers to reach millions of lower income and disadvantaged families that today lack guidance and support.