In late 2020, the University of Michigan’s Poverty Solutions report “The Financial Well-Being of Detroiters: What Do We Know?” found that a combination of low and volatile incomes and disproportionately high costs makes it challenging for tens of thousands of Detroiters to maintain consistently positive cash flow and build savings.

Building off of these findings, United Way for Southeastern Michigan and University of Michigan’s Poverty Solutions kicked off a series of community conversations around opportunities for action to address the underlying conditions that create financial instability and hardship for so many Detroiters.

These conversations led our teams at United Way and University of Michigan Poverty Solutions to design the Detroit Financial Well-Being Innovation Challenge. The Challenge, which launched in February 2022, seeks to catalyze concrete action to improve financial well-being in Detroit. By challenging organizations of all kinds – nonprofits, neighborhood groups, corporations, faith-based institutions, and more – our hope is that, together, we can design and implement bold new solutions to the barriers standing in Detroiters’ way of reaching financial stability.

Learn more about the Big Ideas submitted to the Challenge.


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Click here to return to the main page of the Detroit Financial Well-being Innovation Challenge.