Mining Data to Help Resolve Financial Instability

Bold_Goals_Financial_Alt_LogoThe Bold Goals Financial Services Network (FSN) is a collaboration of financial services providers that is focused on moving low-income people from crisis situations to financial stability. The current network members are Gateway, Greater Birmingham Habitat for Humanity, Neighborhood Housing Services of Birmingham, Salvation Army-Birmingham Area Command, United Way of Central Alabama Financial Stability Program, Jefferson County Committee for Economic Opportunity and the Birmingham Urban League.

The FSN is now collecting and compiling financial data from participating network providers in a uniform way in order to better understand the types and degrees of financial needs across our community. This network database will allow us to measure and track community progress through a variety of financial-stability indicators. These include credit scores, banking services, increased savings, debt reduction, household income, home ownership and employment status.

United Way of Central Alabama has partnered with the Public Affairs Research Council of Alabama (PARCA) to assist in analyzing data being collected by the network providers. PARCA is currently meeting with each provider to discuss its internal goals regarding financial services as well as its methodology in collecting data. This will assure commonality among the data collected and will help identify shared goals among the network providers themselves so that they can work more effectively together to accomplish them.