financial literacy Archives - Common Trust FCU

Promoting Financial Literacy in Our Community

Improving financial literacy in our community is one of our primary goals, and we believe that starts with offering extensive financial education resources for our members. To celebrate how we work to promote financial literacy in our community, we wanted to share some of the services that we are proud to offer.

Youth Accounts

Financial literacy is an essential skill that should be taught early on in life. This can be practiced by encouraging kids to save and manage their own money at a young age. We offer youth accounts for our members’ children and family for exactly that reason. This month we are offering a promotion on our youth accounts to encourage younger generations to start practicing money management. From now until June 1st, those who open a youth account will be entered to win a bike or an Amazon gift card.

Financial Education Center

Whether you’re a beginner at managing your finances or an expert, there’s always room to learn more. That’s why we offer a free financial education center for our members. On this online platform, you can find short interactive courses on topics essential to financial success, such as saving for a home and paying for college. After completing these courses, you’ll have a deeper understanding of the best ways to tackle big financial endeavors.

Financial Literacy Program at Woburn Middle School

Another service that we are proud to offer to our community is our Financial Literacy Program at Woburn’s Kennedy Middle School. With this program, representatives from the credit union teach two classes that help middle school students build a strong foundation for financial responsibility. In March we hosted the first financial literacy auction at the middle school where students were able to take profits from their school business and bid on auction items. You can learn more about CTFCU’s Financial Literacy Auction in our blog post all about the event.

Woburn High School DECA Program

In addition, we’ve also had the opportunity to donate to Woburn High School’s DECA Program, an organization that prepares students for their careers through competitions, conferences and other forms of professional development. For the past two years, the credit union has donated to send students to a state-wide competition in Boston. This is a valuable program as it helps to boost students preparedness for the workforce, which in turn helps set them up for financial success.

As we grow our membership in Woburn and the surrounding communities, we look forward to expanding our financial resources to reach more individuals across new towns and cities. Stay on the lookout for more financial literacy resources and programs as the credit union continues to grow!

5 Reasons Why Financial Literacy Should be Taught from a Young Age

Despite improvements in banking technologies, many Americans are still unaware of how to manage their finances properly. In fact, only 48% of Americans were able to answer at least half of a set of financial literacy questions correctly. Even worse, less than 25% of millennials were able to answer basic financial wellness questions. So, how can adults best prepare younger generations to handle their personal finances properly and live successful lives? The answer begins with teaching financial education to young people both at home and in school. The following are just five of the reasons why teaching financial literacy is so important.

Learn how to save and budget

One of the biggest reasons why financial literacy should be taught is to best prepare them for saving and budgeting their money. Saving and budgeting are skills that are essential to being a financially successful adult and also require discipline that should be practiced from a young age.  A strong financial education allows kids and teens to know where to spend and where to save their money, as well as how to create and stick with a budget.

Avoid harmful financial mistakes

Because financial education is often unfortunately overlooked today, many early adults have to learn about their finances the hard way. When kids and teens are not taught the impact of their financial decisions, it becomes easy for them to make mistakes such as not paying credit card bills on time or overdrawing their accounts. These financial mistakes can lead to long-standing disadvantages, such as having poor credit and affects financial stability and success. Encouraging financial literacy throughout one’s young life helps to prepare them to make the right financial decisions.

Understand the implications of college loans

With the increasing cost of college, many students are relying on loans to cover the cost of tuition for their higher education. However, when high school seniors agree to loans for an expensive college, they may be unaware of what they are signing up for. Students who are not financially literate may not understand how student loans work or what their other options are. Financial education taught through classes in school and by parents helps students to fully understand how their loans work, including how interest accrues and the dangers or defaulting on loans. This education will help students to be better prepared for repaying their loans as adults.

Helps boost the economy

You don’t need to look much further than the United States’ financial crisis during the early 2000s to see how the economy was damaged by those who didn’t understand the full implications of their financial decisions. Having a solid understanding of the impact that individual financial decisions make on the economy is a critical reason why financial literacy is so important. Those who are taught about finances as they grow up will be better prepared to make decisions that will promote a healthy economy. Financial literacy also provides the knowledge that individuals need to navigate finances during times of emergency.

Encourages giving

Lastly, teaching young individuals about financial literacy goes hand in hand with teaching them about giving. By teaching the value of money, and how to spending wisely, it sets up more opportunities for young people to give back to those in need. After a strong financial education, they will be better suited to invest back into their communities.

As you can see, financial literacy is an essential skill that should be taught throughout one’s life, rather than only during adulthood. The month of April is both Credit Union Youth Month and Financial Literacy Month which seeks to promote the importance of financial literacy in young people. CTFCU is committed to building financial literacy in kids and teens, and that’s why we are offering a promotion on our youth accounts. From now until June 1st, open a youth account and you will be entered to win a bike or a $100 Amazon gift card! Visit our promotions page or stop by our office to learn more.

CTFCU Hosts Financial Literacy Auction at Woburn’s Kennedy Middle Schoool

On Monday, March 11th, CTFCU held its first CU4 Reality Auction with two eighth grade classes from Woburn’s Kennedy Middle School. The eighth grade classes are a part of CTFCU’s Financial Literacy Program, where representatives from the credit union teach students about financial responsibility.

The students from this program had been running their own businesses in school for the past few months, and CTFCU’s auction was an opportunity for these students to take their profits and bid on over 40 auction items. After working hard at their businesses since before Christmas, the students took home items including gift cards, sports equipment, and Bluetooth speakers. The auction was a great experience for the students as well as for the staff from CTFCU who attended.

Since kicking off the Financial Literacy Program last year, representatives from the credit union teach classes designed to prepare students for future financial success and cover topics such as personal finance, savings, and credit. CTFCU thanks Kennedy Middle School teacher Sara Dumanski and Principal Carl Nelson for their continued help and support of the CU4Reality Financial Literacy Program.

CTFCU at Kennedy Middle School

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