Financial Opportunity Centers (FOCs) are career and personal finance service centers that help low- to moderate-income people build smart money habits and focus on the financial bottom line. LISC has a network of nearly 80 FOCs across the country, embedded in local community organizations that are trusted, known for their history of providing quality services, and convenient to where people live and seek out services.
FOCs provide employment and career counseling, one-on-one financial coaching and education and low-cost financial products that help build credit, savings and assets. They also connect clients with income supports such as food stamps, utilities assistance and affordable health insurance. The cornerstone of the FOC model is providing these services in an integrated way—rather than as stand-alone services—and with a long-term commitment to helping clients reach their goals.
We’ve learned that integrated or “bundled” services lead to concrete gains in net income and job retention. Research shows that FOC clients who take advantage of combined services are 50 percent more likely to land a well-paying job than people receiving employment services alone. And long-term job retention—holding a job for a year or more—almost doubles when financial coaching reinforces the work of employment counseling.
Research on the efficacy of our Financial Opportunities Center model