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Chocolate Bayou Community FCU to Sponsor Reality Fair for Students
Thursday, April 11, 2013 6:35 AM

Chocolate Bayou Community FCU, a Texas REAL Solutions credit union, is hosting an innovative financial literacy event for select students at Alvin and Manvel High Schools April 19, an exercise designed to show students firsthand what their parents might go through every month with the family budget. 

The CU 4 Reality Financial Education Fair is designed to provide students with a snapshot into the real world of financial reality.  It was developed by the Financial Literacy Education Committee of America’s Credit Union Museum, in conjunction with the New Hampshire Credit Union League.  The financial education fair is being made available to Texas REAL Solutions credit unions at no charge because of support received from the Texas Credit Union League, Texas Credit Union Foundation, the Friends of Consumer Freedom and the National Credit Union Foundation (NCUF). 

“When you listen to the comments of students who complete one of these fairs, you know something has been imparted,” says Gary Davis, president/CEO at Chocolate Bayou FCU.

Students meet with high school counselors beforehand and are given a net monthly pay and a budget worksheet to instruct them on expected expenses. The students make decisions on typical monthly expenses like living arrangements, food, transportation, utilities, clothing, luxury items, etc.

Students are also provided with random credit scores that are used to assist in approving or denying loans.

At the end of the session they will sit with a financial counselor and review their financial profile.

“We have seen students exclaim ‘I’m going to go home and give my mom a hug’ or return to the automobile booth to return the brand new Chevy truck for a mid-sized car,” says Davis. “This is an exercise in balancing the family budget and it’s good to learn early in life that sometimes you just can’t pay for the truck and an apartment as well.”

Participating Alvin and Manvel High Schools students will walk away with a better understanding of what it takes financially when they leave high school or college.

Credit unions interested in learning more about the CU 4 Reality Financial Education Fair and the REAL Solutions program should visit TCUL’s web site, at http://www.tcul.coop/REAL_Solutions.html.

If you have any questions, please contact Paula Upchurch, at pupchurch@tcul.coop.  You can also reach Upchurch by calling (832) 407-7965 or (8000 442-5762, ext. 6822.