Research and Evaluation of Emerging Practice in Affordable Housing and Financial CapabilityResearch funded by JPMorgan Chase
The center will create an “Opportunity Index” and develop new models for increasing financial capability and innovative technologies to deliver financial services.
The UNC Center for Community Capital has received a $1.05 million grant from JPMorgan Chase & Co. to develop strategies and solutions that help under-resourced communities become more vibrant and economically inclusive across the nation.
Center researchers aim to better understand how strategic community investments can enhance lifetime opportunities for low- and moderate-income families. Findings will be disseminated widely so community organizations can expand, sustain and replicate those practices.
The center will create an “Opportunity Index” and develop new models for increasing financial capability and innovative technologies to deliver financial services. The index, created in collaboration with two high-impact local nonprofits, will measure the availability of essential resources that families need to get ahead, such as high quality education, health care, job opportunities and financial services. Using the index as a benchmark, the center will work intensively with community leaders and residents to identify barriers to opportunity and determine how they can be addressed.
The center also will partner with three affordable housing organizations – Cleveland Housing Network, Resurrection Project in Chicago and New York City Housing Authority and Office of Financial Empowerment – that are piloting models for integrating financial capability services into their housing programs. These programs are helping families improve their credit scores as they pay down debt and prepare for new employment and homeownership opportunities as part of a customized financial stability plan.
Additionally, center researchers will evaluate quality financial inclusion efforts to broaden access for consumers by delivering innovative online and mobile access to affordable options for those who lack traditional bank accounts or services.
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