Kentucky Financial Empowerment Commission Launches Kentucky Bank On Network

February 01, 2022

Banking initiative launched with two leading financial empowerment organizations

Today in Frankfort the Kentucky Financial Empowerment Commission, in conjunction with the United Way of the Bluegrass, and Bank On Louisville announced the launch of the Kentucky Bank on Network (KBON). KBON is a statewide partnership committed to increasing bank accessibility and accounts for individuals and businesses across the Commonwealth. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation’s How America Banks Survey found that nearly eight percent of Kentuckians are unbanked, higher than the national average of six percent.

“I am thrilled to bring the Bank On Network to the Commonwealth. Having a bank relationship is the first fundamental step for many individuals and businesses on their financial empowerment journey,” KFEC Executive Director Matt Frey said. “Through the Bank On Network, organizations and financial institutions have a great opportunity to improve their communities.”

KBON members include organizations committed to increasing account access in Kentucky. Partners will be able to learn from each other to build Bank On across Kentucky. Most importantly, KBON will increase account access for those in need.

“United Way of the Bluegrass (UWBG) recognizes that increased access to safe, affordable mainstream banking services will help reduce the need for Kentuckians to utilize alternative financial services, such as payday loans, which normally carry fees that cost the average unbanked person about 5% of their lifetime earnings.” Eli Yussuf, Manager of Grants and Advocacy at the United Way of the Bluegrass, said. “That’s income that can go towards savings or essential expenses. Through Bank On, UWBG leverages its partnerships with local nonprofits, financial institutions, and governments to ensure that fewer Kentuckians spend their hard-earned money on unnecessary fees.”

"Banking access is the cornerstone of financial empowerment and economic mobility opportunities for residents,” Bank On Louisville Co-Chair Erin Waddell said. “Bank On is the catalyst to bring more residents into the financial mainstream and KBON creates a coordinated effort to help Kentuckians achieve financial stability and build wealth.”

To learn more about the Kentucky Bank On Network, click here.

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About the Kentucky Financial Empowerment Commission
The KFEC promotes financial empowerment for all Kentuckians. The commission targets six focus groups: Kentuckians with disabilities, aging Kentuckians, state employees, low-income families, students, and veterans and military personnel. You can learn more about the Kentucky Financial Empowerment Commission at KYFEC.org.

About the United Way of the Bluegrass (UWBG)
UWBG expands access to programs that provide educational, financial, and basic needs resources to residents across Central Kentucky, thereby maximizing the impact that these programs have on the communities they serve. During the 2020-21 fiscal year (July 1 to June 30), UWBG funded 81 programs that were administered by 61 nonprofit partner agencies, which collectively served over 120,000 individuals. These programs provided a wide range of critical services, from childcare to after-school tutoring to job placement to financial assistance to meal distribution. UWBG also manages internal programs which provide a range of services, from free tax preparation assistance (CKEEP) to a 24/7 social services hotline (2-1-1). Our grant-making focus is on strengthening the family unit in a holistic manner, by supporting an ecosystem of programs that collectively address the immediate and long-term needs of families. Visit uwbg.org for more information.

About Bank On Louisville
Launched in 2010, Bank On Louisville is a collaborative partnership among local government, financial institutions and community organizations that work to improve the financial stability of unbanked and underbanked residents in our Louisville community. To date, Bank On Louisville has helped connect more than 47,000 residents to safe and affordable bank accounts and connected more than 25,500 residents to quality financial education. Visit www.bankonlouisville.org for more information.

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