A community development credit union program that helps lower income members save for their kids’ college education will be featured today on the Public Broadcasting System’s news magazine “Need to Know.”
The CDCU is Hope Credit Union, the 28,000-member $162 million credit union, headquartered in Jackson, Miss., participates in the state’s college savings account program.
“Need to Know provides a great forum for bringing attention to the tremendous need for responsible financial services that help families prosper during these difficult financial times,” said Hope CEO Bill Bynum. “As more and more Americans find themselves outside the banking system, innovative solutions and institutions like Hope are critical to creating ladders of opportunity for struggling families.”
“Need to Know” correspondent Stacey Tisdale provides a report on the Mississippi college savings program. The crew recorded students making field trips to the credit union, a grocery store and a college campus, the credit union said.
The college savings program seeks to address the gap in educational attainment affecting low-income and minority students in Mississippi, where less than 15% of 9th graders end up transitioning to and completing college. The two-year pilot project will help more than 500 families develop good saving habits, create a financial nest egg and pave the way for college, according to the credit union.
The television episode also interviewed, Lasonia Christon, whose child is in the program, and describes how the program is helping her create a brighter future for her children, the credit union said. Christon said that in addition to building a college fund for her twins, she has also made important financial decisions for herself. She had been unbanked prior to participating in the program, but is now a Hope Credit Union member with both a checking and savings account.