MADISON, Wis. (3/30/12)--April is National Financial Literacy Month, providing credit unions with an opportunity to help their members understand that financial education is the first step toward financial independence.
The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) will sponsor its annual National Youth Saving Challenge during April. It is held in conjunction with National Credit Union Youth Week, also sponsored by CUNA. This year National Credit Union Youth Week will be held April 22-28, with the theme "Be a Credit Union Super Saver."
Last year nearly 146,000 young members deposited $28.5 million into their saving accounts during National Youth Savings Week---with 9,058 of these new accounts.
For National Credit Union Youth Week promotional materials, including free art work, use the link.
Among the ways credit unions and credit union-related organizations are encouraging their members to budget, save, manage credit, and pay down debt during April, include:
- The National Credit Union Foundation (NCUF) and the Texas Credit Union Foundation (TCUF) have developed "Credit Unions Support Financial Education: Leading the Way to Financial Freedom," a program to raise awareness of credit unions' financial education activities and the importance of financial education. The program is being piloted in California, Illinois, Louisiana, Nevada, New York, North Carolina, South Carolina and Texas by state credit union foundations in each state. To join the initiative, credit unions in participating states must commit to collecting pledges for supporting financial education and to holding a "Financially Fit Day" event April 4, to include fundraising among staff and members.
- CUNA Mutual Group will sponsor TCUF's April 4 "Financially Fit Day" event. TCUF will sponsor a dunking booth as its "Financially Fit Day" event.
- The California Financial Literacy Month blog featured a financial literacy program every day in March to help state credit unions gear up for April.
- TCUF is hosting its "Make the Difference," campaign to promote, celebrate and encourage financial education efforts among credit unions and their communities throughout Texas. The foundation will use the month-long event as the springboard to encourage all credit unions to begin or expand their efforts to provide financial and consumer education to their members, local schools, and communities. "Make The Difference" grants of up to $500 are available to spur these activities. These programs include credit union-based programs or local partnerships with groups such as Junior Achievement, Boys & Girls Clubs, YMCAs/YWCAs, churches and schools.
- The Michigan Credit Union League will pair credit unions with state lawmakers for youth financial education events during
its ninth annual Financial Literacy Legislative Challenge (Michigan Monitor March 5). Lawmakers will join with credit unions to host financial education events at schools, credit unions, or within their local communities. The challenge builds relationships between Michigan legislators and their constituents while providing students with financial skills.
Every month is financial literacy month at Liberty Savings FCU, which holds financial education seminars throughout the year. Karen Velasquez, marketing and business development officer, recently gave a lesson on credit to the business math class at the Kenmare Alternate High School for Women. Velasquez (center) is shown with the group of students and their teacher (far right). (Photo provided by the New Jersey Credit Union League)
- State CU, Columbia, S.C., is supporting Financial Literacy Month with a free webinar designed to help teachers, parents and grandparents raise financially savvy children. The webinar provides a road map for teaching fundamental financial skills that can be used throughout life. "Teaching Children about Money: Raise a Financially Savvy Child" will be offered four times in April.
- Liberty Savings FCU, Jersey City, N.J., celebrates financial literacy throughout the year, said the New Jersey Credit Union League. It holds free seminars on personal finance for local schools and organizations (The Daily Exchange March 23). Karen Velasquez, Liberty Savings FCU marketing and business development officer, recently gave a lesson on credit to the business math class at the Kenmare Alternate High School for Women.