Health & Wealth


OVERVIEW

The Global to Local (G2L) "Health & Wealth" program is about the design of a financial capability solution for clients served in their Community Health Promoters program.  We began our process with G2L staff in May 2015 with the goal of helping them better understand the context of the problem that would lead them toward a specific intervention.  

early discovery results

During the Discovery phase, our interviews with clients, Global to Local staff, and community members revealed that personal money management, savings, credit, and income generation were the most commonly discussed concerns regarding financial literacy and capability. Some of the specifics discussed were:

  • Removing ambiguity about credit  
  • Technology use is promising, but needs to be explained well
  • How to utilize the high social capital that exists among immigrant communities
  • Addressing short-term vs. long-term thinking and needs
  • Perception that having enough money to meet financial goals is equal to being rich
  • High interest in financial matters exists, but increasing financial capability requires assistance  
     

Potential Program Elements

While Global to Local promotes the use of successful interventions from around the globe, the specificity of the U.S. financial system limits the utility of international approaches.  With the existence of few domestic financial literacy programs for immigrants, we recommended using an existing program like "Money Smart" that translates their content into multiple languages and cultures to educate participants in basics of money management.  To supplement the content learning, we suggested integrating financial coaching into the Community Health Promoter program, along with the following:  

  • Changing the "Community Health Promoter" to the "Community Wealth Promoter" program that would include coaching support to build trust and support greater long-term thinking about financial matters.
  • Developing a peer support cohort model using network mapping to take advantage of existing networks.
  • Establishing specific methods that increase responsible use of credit.
  • Utilizing technology as a way to navigate around income barriers.
  • Building credit through rent and medical payments (form a clearinghouse that will report positive credit for payments).
  • Emphasizing behavior and changes in the financial coaching conversations.
  • Creating a tighter connection between health providers & G2L staff.