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Professionals Plan Giveaways, Activities for Financial Literacy Month

With National Financial Literacy Month swiftly approaching, this is a good time to find out what the financial industry has planned in terms of celebration. 2016 marks the third year since the National Financial Educators Council (NFEC) officially set aside April as the month to recognize financial education initiatives and honor advocates of the movement.

Many industry experts take this opportunity to distribute materials they feel will be of particular value to the people they serve. For example, some professionals plan to give out free financial literacy books written by themselves or others. Karthigan Michael Srinivasan of StretchaDime is author of a book designed to help high school-aged youth form the right perspective for dealing with money. Srinivasan plans to reach out proactively to school boards around the U.S. this April to offer them free electronic copies of his book.

As part of his goal to spread financial literacy, Matthew King of Matthew King Software has developed a simple mobile app to teach and show others how to eliminate debt. The app allows users to enter in all their debt and “the app will help them select the best payoff method, provide motivation, and give details on how to pay off all their debt,” King explains. Other experts recommend using games to help drive home important personal finance lessons. Jacob Rivas, Financial Advisor for i*financial, developed a program called Cards Against Financial Illiteracy, structured around educating young professionals about money management while they play the popular card game Cards Against Humanity. “By incorporating a somewhat ‘dry’ subject into an interactive game,” says Rivas, “attendees are able to feel like they are part of the presentation.”

Other professionals expect to ramp up activities around their educational initiatives during financial literacy month. At Harrrisburg University of Science and Technology, for instance, Steve Infanti reports on the university’s DiSanto Speaker Series in Financial Literacy that brings top speakers to campus to provide free education for students and community members. “On April 18th, we are announcing the winners of an essay contest on financial literacy (high school students) and a lecture Money Marathon, which is about building your nest egg,” Infanti added.

Similar learning initiatives have been launched at universities in other parts of the country, such as the business school at the University of Alabama. U of A’s program is called Learning Initiative in Financial Literacy (LIFT), and has more than 300 undergraduate accounting student volunteers who teach financial literacy to anyone interested at seven locations in the surrounding Tuscaloosa community, according to Edith Parten of the U of A College of Commerce.

Parents and seniors will be the particular focus of Levar Haffoney’s national financial literacy month activities. Haffoney, of Fayohne Advisors LLC, plans to offer seminars to PTA groups and senior centers. “My goals are to educate parents on the importance of financing their children’s education, and educating seniors on the importance of estate planning,” states Haffoney. Other professionals, such as Feminine Face of Money’s Dianne Juhl, will reach out specifically to women. She will be hosting a Kitchen Table Talks program weekly throughout April, with a focus on helping women learn what they need to know about managing money as they navigate important financial and life events. “It’s time to join the conversation and take ownership of your wealth,” Juhl comments in the program description.

Clearly the 2016 Financial Literacy Month will have plenty of exciting and potentially invaluable opportunities in store for citizens around the U.S. to obtain personal finance information.


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