Community Financial wins Desjardins Youth Financial Education Award

Community Financial Credit Union is one the nationwide winners of the Desjardins Youth Financial Education Award. The Credit Union National Association’s Desjardins Youth Financial Education Award is awarded annually to recognize model credit union efforts to teach personal finance concepts and skills to members and nonmembers under age 18.

Community Financial’s award-winning program focuses on establishing student-run credit unions and conducting classroom presentations to help increase financial literacy in young people. Community Financial education partnership coordinators work with school administrators and teachers to ensure the program is fulfilling Michigan State benchmarks and core competencies.

In the student-run credit union initiative, student volunteers apply and interview for positions and serve as tellers, accountants, branch managers, computer operators, and marketing representatives. Students are also encouraged to set saving goals when they make deposits.

Community Financial has partnered with nearly 50 elementary, middle, and high schools in their communities with over 1,200 student participants. Community Financial staff conducted 865 presentations to 22,204 students in 2017.

Community Financial’s CEO Bill Lawton and Community Relations Manager Natalie McLaughlin received the award at the CUNA’s Government Affair Conference in Washington on Feb. 28.

“We are pleased to support teachers and families as they strive to teach children solid life skills. Each aspect of our partnerships is built to reinforce core competencies,” McLaughlin said. “This award reflects the many years of partnership with innovative and dedicated teachers. It is an honor to work with each of them every day.”