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Engaging Young People through Financial Literacy
Thursday, September 8, 2016 6:35 AM

By Jeff Bosco, SVP Wealth Management, CUNA Mutual Group

Now, more than ever, young people need our help to learn how to skillfully plan a budget, save for the future and invest with confidence – before money management becomes a struggle. This is critical to their abilities to become financially healthy and fulfill their passions and goals. 

We don’t let our children graduate from high school without a solid grasp of the English language and basic math and science principles. Yet so often we overlook teaching crucial financial skills, such as balancing a checking account and understanding when to use credit cards. This must change.

Young people are our future, and only through strong, educated and financially healthy members do we ensure the sustained success of our credit unions and the credit union movement. Working together, we can play a key role in educating young consumers about basic financial principals. Together, we can lay the foundation for future financial success.  Sharing our financial knowledge will help us build lasting relationships with these young people. It also encourages them to work with credit unions to plan and manage their finances for years to come.

In 2016, CUNA Mutual Group worked with the National Credit Union Foundation to deliver 20 Financial Reality Fairs for high school students across the country. The series resulted in 40 credit unions reaching 5,000 students in nine states.

Through these fairs, students learned how to maintain and improve their financial health and experienced all of the opportunities and benefits credit unions can provide. Simulated scenarios involving credit scores, insurance plans, daycare costs and more taught students how to successfully navigate the financial situations they’ll face when they reach adulthood and live on their own.

This was just the beginning, though. The financial health and education of the next generation is an ongoing investment that we are committed to building. We’re continuing to engage and interact with young people to boost their financial literacy, and we hope our peers – credit unions, leagues, financial advisors, teachers and friends – will join us. 

Help us reach new members today by watching and sharing this financial literacy video, and then get involved by contacting the National Credit Union Foundation or your state credit union foundation to host a fair. Together, we can make a difference.

CUNA Mutual Group is an endorsed five-star business partner of Credit Union Resources, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Cornerstone Credit Union League.