Financial Capability and Asset Building: A Transformational Practice Framework
The promotion of financial capability and asset building (FCAB) is an important and fitting professional activity for social work, which has long been concerned with the economic well-being of individuals and families. Financial capability is attainable only if we assist clients by helping them to build new skills while simultaneously helping them to connect to economic opportunity structures such as savings, job training, or credit repair programs. We propose a person-environment-centered process model for use in FCAB endeavors, using case vignettes to illustrate the application of the process. By drawing upon several theoretical perspectives such as humanistic social work, cognitive behavioral theory, motivational interviewing, solution-focused brief therapy, and diffusion of innovations theory, practitioners may increase clients’ likelihood of successfully connecting to opportunity structures. Attention to behavioral, cognitive, emotional, and policy feedback processes may help to provide the “missing link” between individual financial behavior and the institutional opportunities offered by FCAB programs.
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