The Center for Hunger-Free Communities

Solutions Based on Science and the Human Experience

“I’ve got to pay my rent.  I’ve got to pay gas and electric.  I’ve got to take care of the kids.  I’ve got to make sure there’s food in the house, you know, make sure they got clothes, make sure they got shoes, and make sure I got bus fare to even get to work.  Trying to struggle and juggle all of that on one income that’s coming in the house is extremely hard. It’s extremely hard because I would like to do more for my girls give them everything, of course every parent would.  Every parent would want to do more. It hurts when I can’t get them the things that they would want. So hopefully eventually things will get better; I’ll get a better job or something.  Something has to give, right?  It can’t be this way forever.” 

Banking

A significant segment of the American population remains either unbanked (i.e. without a checking or savings account) or underbanked (i.e. having a bank account but also relying on alternative financial services). In 2009, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation(FDIC) reported that one in four U.S. households are either unbanked or underbanked – representing approximately 60 million adults. Instead of performing financial transactions in the traditional banking system, the unbanked and underbanked often depend on the more costly alternative financial sector, which consists of pawnshops, payday and short-term lenders, tax preparers, check cashing establishments, and rent-to-own facilities.

Current Issue

Many families are hesitant to participate in traditional banking for fear of hidden fees and minimum balance requirements.

Bank on Philadelphia is a unique partnership with banks to provide no-fee accounts for low-income families. It is important for all community-based organizations and social services agencies to know about and refer families to these banking opportunities.

 

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