SACRAMENTO, Calif. (8/29/08)--Educational Employees CU and Sonoma County Grange CU both received first-place honors in the California statewide Desjardins Youth Financial Education Awards. The Desjardins awards recognize leadership within the credit union movement on behalf of youth financial literacy. Educational Employees won the asset category of $250 million and above, while Sonoma County Grange won the less than $35 million asset category, announced the California Credit Union League. As first-place winners, the Fresno, Calif.-based Educational Employees CU and Santa Rosa, Calif.-based Sonoma County Grange CU advance to the national Desjardins Youth Financial Education Awards competition. The national award competition is overseen by the Credit Union National Association. Educational Employees CU was honored for its well-rounded series of programs, it’s depth of knowledge of its community, and the use of various avenues to provide youth financial literacy programs. The credit union partnered with eight libraries to offer workshops during the summer while children were out of school. Sonoma County Grange CU offered programs to reach out to a unique demographic for credit unions--young people involved in the agricultural field. This past year, young credit union members took out $50,000 in loans as part of its 4-H/FFA Agriculture Loan Program. As part of the program, the credit union gives up to $1,500 for initiation or expansion of a project. This teaches young people how to complete a loan application, and make timely loan repayments. The loan is reported to the credit bureau so that youths receive a credit score. L.A. Financial CU, Pasadena, Calif., received an honorable mention.