It’s back to school season, and Virginia’s credit unions didn’t waste any time reaching out to their next members – students.
Virginia-based credit unions reached 21,174 students during the new 2012-2013 school year with lessons on personal finance basics, according to the Credit Unions Care Foundation of Virginia’s Financial Education Committee.
Launched in 2009 by the Virginia Credit Union League, the CUCF helps individuals improve their lives through education and supports other charitable groups and public service causes.
Educating young people about budgeting, the importance of saving for the future, and the wise use of credit has been a priority of Virginia's CUs for decades, the league said.
Virginia’s credit unions are among the nation's leaders in financial education and have reached 261,675 students with lessons on basic budgeting and money management since 1999, the CUCF said.
"Few decisions affect us more directly than the ones we make about our money," said UVA Community Credit Union's Rebecca Cardwell, CUCF’s chair. "And as we've learned the past few years, financial illiteracy not only takes a terrible toll on the individual, it can also have a deep and lasting impact on our communities and society as a whole."
The efforts of the commonwealth's credit unions were recognized recently by the National Youth Involvement Board, capturing the sixth-place ranking nationally in number of students reached (21,174) and seventh-place nationally in the number of classroom presentations conducted (499), the league and the foundation said.
The NYIB collects financial education data each school year from the nation's credit unions, asking credit union employees and volunteers to report the number of personal finance presentations made to students, the specific topics covered, and the number of students reached during each presentation.
Nationally, credit unions reached 400,000 students in 12,243 classroom presentations during the 2012-2013 school year, according to the NYIB, figures which include the Virginia numbers.