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Financial Literacy Program Expanding Puget Sound Offerings

by School's Out Washington | | Posted under Afterschool and Summer News

Clinton Taylor, Financial Beginnings

Guest post by Financial Beginning’s Seattle-Based Program Manager, Clinton Taylor

Financial Beginnings, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides free financial education programs, has expanded its operations over the last year opening a second office in Seattle to better serve youth in the Puget Sound area. We hope to bring new energy and enthusiasm to Washington schools, encouraging students to see finances as a tool to realize their dreams, rather than a barrier. We believe that the sooner young people evaluate their financial health, the more likely they are to achieve their life goals.

Financial Beginnings seeks to address specific needs within Washington’s low-income, Spanish speaking, rural and tribal communities, with a special emphasis on helping youth to achieve post-secondary success. Over the last six months, our Washington team has identified the unique needs of the region and developed strategies to reach and empower its most underserved communities.

On the heels of recent legislation passed by the State of Washington to strengthen financial education standards, our expansion hopes to utilize this climate of political change to get schools excited about personal finance programs. In early 2015, the State of Washington passed Senate Bill 5202 requiring school districts to adopt the Jump$tart Coalition National Standards as the essential academic learning requirements for K-12 financial education.

In addition to public forums and annual skill-building events for teachers, Financial Beginnings’ core programming educates youth and young adults on the basics of personal finance through visits to schools and community groups. These programs incorporate all aspects of money management – from budgeting, to saving, to investing – to provide individuals the foundation they need to make informed financial decisions. Each year, we teach over 25,000 youth and adults how to effectively manage their money. We strive to make our programs as accessible as possible, providing volunteer instructors and student guides at no cost to schools, community groups, or participants. We have curriculum for grades K-12 and beyond. We also offer our programs in both English and Spanish. Our model is simple – choose the right program for you, register online, and we will take care of the rest.

Through our partnership with School’s Out Washington, we hope to reach organizations throughout the region supporting youth in afterschool and summer programs. We know that the informal education environment is just as important as the K-12 system when it comes to reaching youth and providing the skills needed to succeed in life.

If you are interested in working with Financial Beginnings as a volunteer or signing up for classes at your school or organization please visit our website at www.FinancialBeginnings.org or contact Washington Program Manager Clinton Taylor at clinton@financiabeginnings.org or 800.406.1876 x 2. Be sure to keep an eye out for our upcoming training offered in partnership with School’s Out Washington in early 2016!

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