CASE Credit Union (CASE CU) partnered with the YMCA to host a week-long summer camp using Biz Kid$ concepts and curriculum to enhance youth financial literacy in their community. CASE CU received support from the National Credit Union Foundation (the Foundation) through a Biz Kid$ Financial Education Grant.
“Biz Kid$ episodes paired with the free curriculum is the perfect way to reach youth and to help them understand basic money management principles,” said Danielle Brown, Director of Development and Donor Relations at the Foundation. “The Foundation is proud to support CASE CU in their efforts to increase financial literacy in their community.”
CASE CU is a Low Income and Community (LICU) dedicated to developing, providing, and investing in sustainable financial education programs for its’ members, with a special emphasis on youth. Currently, some personal finance is taught in grades k-12th and at Lansing Community College but there was room for improvement.
CASE CU recognized this gap in financial education, and developed this summer camp to help teach the children in their community about budgeting, saving, spending, debit and other crucial topics.
“If we can educate our youth on financial concepts and then empower them by giving them the skills they need to capitalize on their innate entrepreneurial spirit, then we are working towards building community solutions to the economic problems that plague our area,” said Porsche Miles-Grant, Community Engagement Coordinator at CASE Credit Union.
This camp focused on Biz Kid$ episodes about goals, budgeting, saving, entrepreneurship, and earning money. From watching the episodes, the campers were asked to create a business proposal with the help of entrepreneurs within the Lansing area. They were given two days to research and work on their proposals, and presented their finished proposals in front of a panel of judges.
Each business plan included a marketing component, finances needed to start the business, information about possible competitors, and the need for the business. It gave the campers the opportunity to creatively demonstrate what they had learned about entrepreneurship while showcasing Biz Kid$ concepts.
The campers also partook in a Shark Tank activity where they were given a product, and had to create a pitch to a panel of judges to convince them of the usefulness of the product. This allowed the children to present their business plans, and demonstrate their newly learned entrepreneur skills.
“We teach our students that your attitude is like a flat tire, until you change it you will not go anywhere. Knowing this, students begin to see their lives in a positive light and try their best to make sound financial decisions,” noted Grant.
The campers were a part of a “vision board” competition in which each student created a board that visually demonstrated their future in the next 10 years as it related to their goals and financial success. They were able to apply the lessons and concepts they had learned at camp to envision what their financial future may look like.
“At the end of the camp the students explained how useful the camp was to them, and how it helped them to put their future into perspective. They said that because of the Biz Kid$ Camp, they will practice the necessary skills to become financially successful,” said Grant.
A Foundation Grant at Work
This “Grant at Work” is part of a series
that highlights Foundation grantees who made a positive impact in
their community and empowered consumers to achieve financial freedom
through credit unions. Grants are made possible by supporters of the
Biz Kid$ - Teaching Kids about Money & Business
Biz Kid$ is a financial literacy initiative launched nationally in
January 2008 that teaches kids about money and business. The initiative
includes an award-winning TV series, free classroom curriculum,
outreach activities, and a website targeting children 9 – 16 years
old. The Foundation is responsible for the fundraising and outreach
of the program, and a coalition of over 300 credit unions and
affiliates from across the country have helped exclusively fund Biz
Many credit unions leverage Biz Kid$ to teach financial education in
schools in their community. In addition to the Foundation’s box sets and starter kits, companion materials and other resources for teachers and parents are available at no cost on the Biz Kid$ website, bizkids.com. The site also features clips from the series and invites kids to appear on the show.
For more information about Biz Kid$, click here.