Lead Organization: Alameda County Public Health Department
Key Partners: Alameda County Health Care Services Agency, Urban Strategies Council, Alameda County Community Asset Network and the Walter and Elise Haas Fund.
Project Location: Oakland, Calif.
Contact: Bina Shrimali, Health Equity Innovation Manager, Alameda County Public Health Department, firstname.lastname@example.org
Financial well-being plays a critical role in building healthy communities. All Alameda County residents need access to appropriate financial services in order to meet their daily needs and pursue advancement opportunities like buying a home, starting a business, or getting an education. Too many Alameda County residents lack access to fair financial products and services and turn to predatory services, such as payday lenders, pawn shops and check cashers to meet their banking and credit needs. Without financial tools to support their needs, families can’t weather emergencies, save for the future, or help the next generation.
The Alameda County Prosperity Project - a collaboration between the Alameda County Public Health Department, Urban Strategies Council, Alameda County Community Asset Network, and other local partners - is working to improve health and financial well-being in its community by increasing availability and access to fair financial services and products where predatory financial services are disproportionately located. The project’s mission is to ensure that all residents, regardless of race or place of residence, can build wealth and economic security necessary to lead a long and healthy life.
The Prosperity Project has three major components: policy, education, and service delivery. The Prosperity Project will advance policies so local government leverages by investing taxpayer dollars in institutions helping to expand access to small business loans and other financial services in underserved Alameda County neighborhoods. Education efforts include the Savvy Consumer Toolkit, which is an innovative curriculum that raises awareness, builds critical thinking skills about predatory financial products and services, and connects consumers to local, low-cost alternatives. Service Delivery efforts include the integration of the Savvy Consumer Toolkit and other financial tools into existing health programs, including home visits to families expecting a baby or who just had a baby.
Matching funds for this grant will be provided by Alameda County Health Care Services Agency and the Walter and Elise Haas Fund.