There are some outstanding alternatives to predatory lenders that can open doors to a financial system that works for everyone, especially the underbanked, like the FAIR initiative from Prepare + Prosper.

With more than 200,000 underbanked families in the Twin Cities, Prepare + Prosper saw a profound unmet need and an opportunity for an innovative initiative that could meet it. So, it decided to create the Financial Access in Reach (FAIR) initiative to connect underbanked community members to opportunities to improve their financial well being.

Low-income or underbanked community members (especially people of color) don’t often have access to safe, affordable financial services that can help them climb out of debt and start building savings, and hope, for the future.

FAIR’s suite of financial products, ranging from low-cost debit cards to credit-building savings accounts, allows the underbanked to build the skills and assets that can provide new opportunities in a more trusting environment that welcomes their entry into the financial mainstream.

Prepare + Prosper’s financial capability director, Anne Leland Clark, says: “What we’re doing is providing products in a new way. We’re organizing a multisector distribution network rooted in community and leveraging trust.”

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