RICHMOND and PORTSMOUTH, Va. (7/20/09)--Several Virginia credit unions have offered financial education programs in the state. One credit union reached more than 3,000 youth and adults during the second quarter. Virginia CU offered seminars to 3,082 people. Seminar topics included:
* Today’s Economy; * Building a Better Budget; * Strategies for Eliminating Debt; * Raising a Money Smart Kid; * Solving the Mystery of Credit Reports; and * Information for First Time Homebuyers.
The seminars were offered at public libraries, workplaces and at the credit union. Youth accounted for more than half of the 3,082 participants from April to June. Virginia CU Education Director Cherry Hedges developed curricula for high school and college students that covers the basics of budgeting, saving, borrowing, careers and what to know before making a major purchase. Guardian FCU, Portsmouth, offered a three-hour financial literacy workshop Thursday at the credit union. Teens attending the workshop learned how to fill in a check register and budget their money, and the difference between fixed and flexible expenses (Virginian Pilot
July 17). Jackie Cross, Guardian’s financial counselor, used games and financial lessons to teach the students. In one game, students received 20 beans that they had to allot for expenses. Cross then told students that they were in a recession and had to eliminate seven beans. The students suggested cutting back on food and recreation to make up for the loss, the newspaper said. Chris Anuswith, president/CEO of the credit union, said schools and parents are not teaching financial literacy and it is more of a problem than computer illiteracy. If people were more financially literate, there may not be a mortgage crisis or problems with credit cards, Anuswith told the newspaper.