Bank On Cities

Lack of access to the financial mainstream makes it difficult for families to thrive and saps the economic potential of the communities in which they live.

In response to this challenge and the growing interest among municipal leaders in helping residents connect to the financial mainstream, the National League of Cities’ Institute on Youth, Education, and Families launched the Bank on Cities Campaign in early 2008 to help cities replicate the Bank On San Francisco program model launched in 2006 by then-Mayor Gavin Newsom and Treasurer Jose Cisneros in an effort to help San Francisco’s 50,000 unbanked residents access safe and affordable financial services.

As a product of the campaign, the Connecting Residents to the Financial Mainstream toolkit provides a step-by-step guide for elected officials, municipal staff, community organizations, financial institutions and others who wish to develop a Bank On initiative in their communities. The toolkit considers the diverse circumstances facing municipalities today and is designed to offer suggestions and strategies that local leaders can adapt to meet the specific needs of their communities.

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For additional information on how local leaders are helping improve residents’ economic mobility, join our Economic Mobility Peer Network.