Building Better Lives for Missouri’s Working Families
Credit unions are rooted in their communities. Credit unions can’t be bought or sold. So, credit unions are focused on serving the local businesses and people in their area. Credit unions want to make their communities a better place, too. Helping people is what we do.
Teaching Kids How to Handle
“Real World” Money Challenges
Housing. Food. Transportation. As an adult, you know there are a lot of things to pay for in the real world. Helping kids understand this is a different story. Credit unions can help.
Mid Missouri Credit Union (Fort Leonard Wood) worked with high school students in a hands-on effort called Mad City Money to bring the message home.
Waynesville High School freshmen learned key budget and life planning skills they’ll need out of high school and college. After getting an assigned occupation and salary, some students received any combination of the following: credit card, student loan debt, medical insurance, spouses and children.
Mid Missouri Credit Union representatives staffed nine merchants in “Mad City” where students could purchase housing, transportation, food, daycare and other needs. Students also had access to a mall (for “wants”), as well as a credit union for financial services.
Each student had to develop a monthly budget based on their incomes. They also learned that life throws the unexpected your way – as each participant randomly received unexpected windfalls and unplanned expenses from the “Fickle Finger of Fate.” Students wrote checks for their purchases and had to balance both their checkbooks and their budgets.
This eye-opening experience helped kids understand what their parents go through to keep the family going. One said, “When I have a career and steady income I will make sure I use what I learned here and also to understand that needs are more important than wants.”
This is the third year Mid Missouri Credit Union has offered Mad City Money, and plans are in the works to bring it to other school districts in the communities they serve.
Credit unions across the state offer financial education opportunities. Check with your local credit union to see what options are available for your student – and you.