Components of a Bank On Initiative
The National League of Cities, in its Bank On Cities Connecting Residents to the Financial
Mainstream Toolkit for Municipal Leaders (Click here to see the entire Toolkit), identified six
core components that are key to the success of a municipal initiative to expand access to
mainstream financial services:
Below are some resources that we have collected for current and prospective Bank On Collations:
Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund National Bank On Platform
FDIC National Survey of Un and Underbanked Households
Second Chance Accounts in Florida
League of Cities - Bank On Cities Kit
- The mayor or another prominent local official should serve as a champion of the
initiative. Local elected officials have the power to raise public awareness of the issues
related to financial services, and bring local financial institutions and other partners to the
- Strong partnerships are the backbone of an effective Bank On initiative. No one entity
can achieve success on its own. Community organizations have direct connections to the
target populations. Financial institutions have the capacity to deliver low-cost financial
products and services. City government staff can serve as coordinators and conveners.
Other community stakeholders can bring additional knowledge and resources to a Bank
- By bringing key partners together in the early planning stages, city leaders can draw on
their expertise and facilitate buy-in, particularly among financial institutions.
- Local partners should develop a data collection strategy in the early stages of the
initiative. This process requires negotiating with financial institutions on how to report
data on Bank On accounts, and in some cases developing an evaluation component
outside of the tracking conducted by financial institutions. The ability to measure the
Bank On program's impact is vital to its sustainability, continued involvement of
partners, political viability and funding.
- There is no need for cities to "reinvent the wheel" in developing a Bank On initiative.
Local officials can use resources, expertise and technical support from NLC, the FDIC,
the Federal Reserve regional banks and other cities that already have programs in place.
Moreover, websites such as joinbankon.org can offer a portal to helpful information.
- Finally, creating a Bank On program in isolation is a missed opportunity. By
incorporating a Bank On initiative into a larger community asset-building agenda, cities
not only help families open bank accounts, but also enable them to achieve long-term
In July of 2017, FPP Interns inventoried Bank Products. Here is what they found: PDF of presentation
- Click here for a recording of this session
In December of 2016, FPP inventoried Credit Union and CDFI Alternative loan products. Here is what was found: Credit Union and CDFI Inventory