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Chocolate Bayou Community FCU Receives Certificate of Commendation from Local School District
Tuesday, September 17, 2013 6:50 AM

Gary Davis

The Alvin ISD School Board presented Chocolate Bayou Community FCU with a Certificate of Commendation in honor of various partnerships with the school district.

Most recently, the credit union was a major sponsor helping to bring Rachel’s Challenge to Alvin and Manvel high schools. Rachel’s Challenge is a series of empowering programs and strategies that equip students and adults to combat bullying and feelings of isolation and despair by creating a culture of kindness and compassion. The programs are based on the writings and life of 17-year-old Rachel Scott who was the first student killed at Columbine High School in 1999.

Chocolate Bayou Community FCU was also honored for bringing financial reality fairs to Alvin and Manvel high schools last year. As a REAL Solutions credit union, Chocolate Bayou Community FCU was able to utilize the turnkey CU 4 Reality Financial Education Fair.

Developed by the Financial Literacy Education Committee of America’s Credit Union Museum, in conjunction with the New Hampshire Credit Union League, this unique fair provides students with a firsthand experience of what their parents go through every month managing the family budget. The reality fair is less than three hours long, yet imparts a valuable snapshot view into the real world of financial reality.

According to Mike Delker, senior vice president with the Cornerstone Credit Union League, the CU 4 Reality Financial Education Fair is being made available to REAL Solutions credit unions because of support received from the League, Cornerstone Credit Union Foundation, the Friends of Consumer Freedom and the National Credit Union Foundation (National Foundation). REAL Solutions stands for Relevant, Effective, Asset-building, Loyalty-producing solutions. 

Participating students in the fair hosted by Chocolate Bayou Community FCU included seniors enrolled in economics classes at Alvin and Manvel high schools. Students met with high school counselors beforehand and received a monthly pay and a budget worksheet to instruct them on expected expenses. The students made decisions on typical monthly expenses like living arrangements, food, transportation, utilities, clothing, luxury items, pets, etc. At the end of the session they sat with a financial counselor and reviewed their financial profile – and most were surprised.

Paula Upchurch, REAL Solutions director with the Cornerstone Credit Union League, says this was the first time two financial education fairs were held back-to-back. Between the morning and afternoon sessions, Upchurch says more than 300 students were reached.

In 2012, Upchurch says some 2,400 students were reach with the CU 4 Reality Financial Education Fair. In 2013, well over 3,550 students have been reached to date. Upchurch says she is continuing to see increased interest among credit unions to host a CU 4 Reality Financial Education Fair in their local schools.

Credit unions can learn more about the REAL Solutions and the CU 4 Reality Financial Education Fair on the REAL Solutions page.