For the third year in a row, the National Credit Union Foundation (NCUF) will be holding a Financial Reality Fair in conjunction with the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) Governmental Affairs Conference (GAC) in Washington, DC. A Reality Fair is an interactive financial literacy tool for high school students.
The fair will be held at the Rayburn House Office Building on Wednesday, February 27, 2013 from 12:00 – 2:00 P.M. with students from area schools - Capital City Public Charter School, Luke Charles Moore Academy, and Washington Metropolitan High School - expected to attend. GAC attendees can simply show up on the first floor of the Rayburn Office Building (right above the main entrance) on Capitol Hill at any time to observe the fair.
Volunteer & NCUF Deputy Executive Director Tom Candell counsels a teen on her budget after she visited all the booths at last year's Reality Fair at GAC.
“Conducting a Reality Fair at GAC is a great way to expose legislators and their staff about the unique and impactful financial education programs that are offered by credit unions,” said Lois Kitsch, NCUF National REAL Solutions Program Director. “Not only are area high school students benefiting from the experience as well, but we welcome GAC attendees to the fair to see the benefits of holding a reality fair in their community.”
Last year, NCUF held a Reality Fair on Capitol Hill for Roosevelt Senior High School students. Afterwards, student responses to survey after the fair indicated that almost 90% will start to budget their money every month and 100% of students said it changed the way they will save and spend money.
The GAC event is sponsored by NCUF with support and expertise from:
- The Credit Union League of Connecticut;
- Maryland & DC Credit Union Association;
- Congressional Federal Credit Union;
- HEW Federal Credit Union; and
- GPO Federal Credit Union.
The Reality Fair concept is a unique opportunity for students to experience some of the financial challenges they will face when they start life on their own. It’s a hands-on experience in which students identify their career choice and starting salaries then complete a budget sheet requiring them to live within their monthly salary while paying for basics such as housing, utilities, transportation, clothing, and food. Additional expenditures such as entertainment and travel are factored in as well. Throughout the fair, there are many temptations for additional spending, and students must learn to balance their wants and needs to live on their own. After the students have visited the various booths covering components of independent living, students balance their budget, and then sit down with a financial counselor for review.
Additional NCUF Highlights at GAC
In addition to the Reality Fair on Wednesday at GAC, NCUF will be celebrating three special award winners on Monday, February 25th at the National Credit Union Foundation Dinner Presenting the Herb Wegner Memorial Awards.
NCUF will also be showcasing its programs in the exhibit hall at booth #469. On Monday from 12:30 – 1:30 PM in the NCUF booth, GAC keynoter and finance expert Jean Chatzky will be signing copies of her book “Money Rules: The Simple Path to Lifelong Security.”
About the National Credit Union Foundation (ncuf.coop):
The National Credit Union Foundation is the US credit union movement's primary national philanthropic program provider, fundraiser and grant-maker, working to help consumers achieve financial freedom through credit unions. Through NCUF grants and programs, credit unions provide widespread financial education, create greater access to affordable financial services, and empower more consumers to save, build assets, and own homes.
NCUF is funded primarily by investments in the award-winning Community Investment Fund (CIF) and by generous Supporters led by the Credit Union National Association and CUNA Mutual Group. All NCUF donors provide support that empowers NCUF and state credit union foundations to make financial freedom achievable through credit unions.
The National Credit Union Foundation is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charitable organization. NCUF continues to earn the Better Business Bureau seal of approval as an “Accredited Charity” for meeting all 20 BBB Wise Giving Alliance Standards for national charities.