This April, credit unions nationwide are going to get Wild About Saving™ during National Credit Union Youth Month.
Youth Month is an opportunity for credit unions to attract new members, raise youth engagement, improve financial literacy among young adults, and gain member loyalty from young members and their parents.
The celebration has grown this year from National Credit Union Youth Week to allow credit unions to make a larger impact in the financial lives of their young members.
“Youth Month gives credit union employees the chance to unleash their creativity and connect with youth in their communities,” says Joanne Sepich, CUNA consumer education director. “For children, every trip to the credit union during Youth Month is an adventure. Plus, credit union staff going into schools will guide youth through the savings jungle, sparking their imagination and teaching them to become money-savvy consumers.”
Credit unions participating in Youth Month recognize that children and young adults are their future. In a few years, these members will be opening checking accounts, applying for debit and credit cards and looking for student loans.
By focusing on engagement and education at a young age, credit unions not only give adolescents the tools they need to face future financial situations, they ensure young adults turn to credit unions as their needs for financial services increase.
Financial education initiatives such as Youth Month help credit unions build an informed, loyal, life-long membership.
During Youth Month, credit unions are encouraged to come up with unique ways to engage their members. Credit unions can host movie nights and ice cream socials, for example, to draw families into branches.
They can also organize community service projects, invite local schools for field trips and host savings competitions, like the National Youth Saving Challenge.
Running concurrently with Youth Month and sponsored by GreenPath® Debt Solutions, the National Youth Saving Challenge encourages young members to set savings goals and make deposits.
At the end of the challenge, 25 savers from credit unions nationwide will each win a $100 cash prize. Last year, 94,466 young members deposited more than $20.5 million during this event, 8,844 of whom were new members.
Participation in the contest is free and open to affiliated credit unions. When used in conjunction with Youth Month, it can make a noticeable impact on youth engagement.
“Parents are the key to putting children on a smart financial path,” Sepich says. “Credit unions can use Youth Month to continue that journey.”
Credit unions can supplement their celebration with educational resources that impact members of all ages year-round with:
• Mad City Money: A Jump$tart Coalition Clearinghouse-approved simulation to teach teenagers how to manage money effectively in the real world.
• CUNA Marketing Microsites: Ready-to-use member financial education sites.
• CUNA Financial Counseling Certification Program: A training program for credit union staff who are committed to helping members take control of their finances.
Click here www.cuna.org/youthmonth for celebration ideas, marketing resources, official Youth Month merchandise, and more.