CU Takes Financial Education to the Big Screen

Carter FCU partners with local movie theater to promote financial literacy.

December 17, 2012

Carter Federal Credit Union, Springhill, La., is promoting financial literacy on the big screen though its Collaborative Financial Education Pilot Program, which combines financial education and entertainment.

The $207 million asset credit union has developed a member volunteer training program, partnered with a local studio to produce a series of financial literacy video trailers to be shown before movie features in a local theatre, and provided interactive workshops around Biz Kid$ financial education programming.

Biz Kid$ is the Emmy Award-winning and credit union-funded public television series that teaches kids about money management and entrepreneurship.

Carter Federal launched the program this year with a grant from the National Credit Union Foundation (NCUF). Two member businesses, Fairfield Studios and the Spring Theatre, partnered with the credit union to develop and implement the project by contributing services, products and funding.

The credit union’s pilot program includes three initiatives designed to deliver financial education and literacy training to target populations:

1. A member volunteer training program through which Carter Federal trained credit union staff and member volunteers to deliver financial education workshops and presentations to the local community.

The group was named the “Carter Federal Education Team.” So far, it has provided financial education training to more than 500 people in the low-income and underserved rural areas of Northwest Louisiana and South Arkansas.

These areas have high levels of economic distress related to unemployment, poverty, substandard housing, predatory payday lenders, and other challenges.

2. A partnership with Fairfield Studios to create a series of educational video trailers that are shown in the Spring Theatre.

These videos introduce financial literacy topics to age-appropriate audiences using a “Carter’s Fun Facts About Money” concept. Filmed on location in the communities the credit union serves, the videos combine familiar surroundings and social/cultural elements with financial literacy topics to peak interest and raise awareness among viewers.

Other trailers included:

  • A New Bike,” targeted toward youth and shown before G-rated movies. It addresses careless spending and the importance of savings.
  • Your Financial Future Preview,” aimed at those age 21 and older. It addresses the importance of retirement planning, saving, and investing for the future.
  • Looking Back Looking Forward,” which targets people age 17 and older. PG-rated movies that target viewers in this age range. The script was written to address the financial literacy issues that are most relevant to Carter Federal members and the community.

3. Interactive financial education delivered on the big screen through the Spring Theatre’s summer Kids Camp Movie Program and Senior Citizen Night.

NCUF grants are made possible by supporters of the Foundation and the Community Investment Fund.