ALICE Project

The United Way ALICE Project is a grassroots movement committed to strengthening communities by improving the lives of ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) - our families, neighbors, and colleagues who work hard, earn above the federal poverty level, but not enough to afford a basic household budget of housing, child care, food, transportation, and health care.

View the report online or download the United Way ALICE Report for Iowa.

Take the ALICE simulator to experience the decisions faced by 22% of Story County residents each month.


Key Findings from the United Way ALICE Report for Iowa
* 381,266 Iowa households - 31% - struggle to afford basic household expenses
* Federal Poverty Level indicates only 12% of Iowa households faced financial hardship - an ADDITIONAL 19% of households fall below the ALICE Threshold (meeting a household survival budget)
* ALICE households comprise between 21% and 41% of the population in every Iowa county
* More than one quarter - 28% - of senior households fall below the ALICE Threshold
* Over 92,000 households with children fall below the ALICE Threshold
* The average annual household Survival Budget for a four-person family in Iowa is $46,680, while the Federal Poverty Level for the same family is $23,850
* Childcare represents a family's greatest expense - $928/month for one infant and one preschooler in licensed and accredited childcare; $745 for the same children in registered in-home care
* 68% of Iowa jobs pay less than $20/hour; 48% of those pay between $10 - $15 per hour
* In 2011, 22% of Iowa's households had less than $4,632 in savings or other assets
* Total public and private spending on Iowa households below the ALICE Threshold is $7.2 billion
* 44% of renters spend more than 30% of their household income on rent