Tools & Resources

  • Taking the First Step: Six Ways to Start Building Financial Security and Opportunity at the Local Level (2013)

    Drawing on the experiences of cities of all sizes across the nation, a new report published by CFED and NLC highlights six no-cost or low-cost ideas for how city officials can get started in helping more families in their community achieve financial stability.

  • Banking On Opportunity: A Scan of the Evolving Field of Bank On Initiatives (2011)

    NLC has prepared a new report under contract with the U.S. Department of the Treasury and CFED tracing the growth of the Bank On model within the broader financial access field and examining the current landscape of Bank On programs.

  • JoinBankOn.Org Online Portal

    City officials can find a wide range of tools to help residents gain access to mainstream financial services and enhance families' economic well-being at the revamped JoinBankOn.org online portal. The site focuses specifically on helping communities adopt the Bank On model. Users can find information on the number and proportion of unbanked residents in their community, guidance for launching a Bank On program, and opportunities to network with other Bank On professionals.

  • Bank On Cities: Connecting Residents to the Financial Mainstream (2011)

    This toolkit provides municipal leaders with a step-by-step guide for launching "Bank On" initiatives that help working families avoid high-cost check cashing and other fringe financial services.

  • AssetPlatform.org

    Developed by the Aspen Institute and the Center for the Study of Social Policy, this online resource is designed for municipal and nonprofit organization staff who provide residents with financial education, coaching and asset development services. AssetPlatform.org offers a variety of relevant training, tools and products organized around six primary categories of resources: 1) budgeting; 2) savings; 3) credit score; 4) debt; 5) insurance; and 6) organizational resources.

  • The State of City Leadership for Children and Families: Innovations and Trends in Family Eonomic Success (2009)

    The YEF Institute's first-ever report on The State of City Leadership for Children and Families identifies the nation's most cutting-edge city strategies to help children and families thrive. A chapter on family economic success highlights a broad range of innovations and trends in municipal leadership.

  • Action Kit on Helping Families Achieve Financial Stability (2008)

    This action kit focuses on steps that city officials can take to help families avoid debt and predatory lending, save and build assets, and achieve long-term financial stability.

  • Combating Poverty: Emerging Strategies from the Nation's Cities (2008)

    This report highlights local poverty reduction strategies from 13 cities across the nation. The survey responses compiled in the report demonstrate how municipal leaders are well-positioned to lead citywide initiatives to reduce poverty.

  • Maximizing the Earned Income Tax Credit in Your Community: A Toolkit for Municipal Leaders (2006)

    This toolkit was created to help municipal leaders ensure that eligible families have the information and assistance they need to claim the EITC.

  • State and Local Support for Earned Income Tax Credit Outreach Campaigns (2006)

    This report describes how state and local governments have strategically funded EITC outreach campaigns to help low-income families become more financially secure and bring additional federal dollars into local communities.

  • Screening Tools to Help Families Access Public Benefits (2005)

    This report provides municipal officials with approaches and specific technology options for using screening tools to connect eligible residents to key state and federal benefits. Highlighted in the report are several local, state, and nationally franchised electronic screening tools used by city governments.

  • Strengthening Families in America's Cities: Family Economic Security (2003)

    Research findings published in this report are from NLC's Strengthening Families in America's Cities Survey of municipal officials, which examined issues affecting children and families in American cities and towns. Among the findings are that homeownership incentives and transportation improvements are the strategies cities are most likely to use to improve family economic security; city leaders consider a wide range of strategies to be effective; and most officials say job training and education are effective in helping low-income families.

  • Action Kit on Helping Working Families (2001)

    This action kit for municipal leaders focuses on outreach steps to assist low-income working families in accessing benefits such as the Child Health Insurance Program, food stamps, and the Earned Income Tax Credit.