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Madison, Wis. – The National Credit Union Foundation (NCUF) is now collecting data for its 2011 Credit Union Member Education Inventory. Sponsored by state credit union leagues and NCUF’s REAL Solutions program, the data and information gathered from credit unions will enable the credit union movement to demonstrate the power of financial education and counseling on the lives of members and communities across the country.
This information will provide state credit union leagues/associations and the broader credit union movement with fuel for state and national public awareness, advocacy, and related outreach efforts. Survey responses will create a rich, vibrant and sustainable source of data and statistics about the lives touched by credit unions.
“No one has quantified in-depth information for the entire credit union movement around financial education,” said Bucky Sebastian, NCUF Executive Director. “From the limited data that we have collected through REAL Solutions, we know that credit unions have an impressive story to tell, and it behooves us to show legislators and community leaders the extent to which credit unions advance financial literacy and decision-making, especially given the government’s ever-increasing emphasis on financial education.”
Each league/association will have a section in the resulting report that contains state-specific data and comparisons to national figures. Designed for maximum impact and exposure, the report will be used for communications, advocacy and outreach efforts, and will be accessible to participating credit unions at no charge through the REAL Solutions® Impact Center. In addition, a companion tool detailing member financial education/counseling products and credit union best practices will be published in conjunction with the report.
NCUF is using an online survey tool to gather this data during March and April. Roughly 700 credit union CEO/presidents will receive an email from Lois Kitsch in the coming weeks requesting their participation in the Inventory. However, NCUF is inviting all U.S. credit unions to participate in the project.
Credit unions may use the following URL to access the survey: https://vovici.com/wsb.dll/s/f49dg49018. Or, credit unions can simply visit the REAL Solutions Impact Center at www.realsolutions.coop to access the survey.
“NCUF and state CU leagues/associations eagerly await the results of this data collection effort,” said Lois Kitsch, NCUF’s REAL Solutions National Program Director. “We know that credit unions are doing amazing work in the area of member financial literacy and education. And while we read and hear about these tools and programs on a daily basis, we now need to quantify your efforts so we can share credit unions’ overall impact with those who rely on numbers to measure success.”
The eight sections of the inventory:
- Financial counseling programs
- Classroom education (for students)
- Seminars and workshops (for adults)
- Experiential learning programs
- In-school branches
- Online resource centers/tools/courses
- Financial communication tools
- General financial education questions
A notable section of the inventory seeks to determine the extent to which credit union financial education/counseling programs align with a set of Financial Education Core Competencies developed by the U.S. Treasury Department’s Financial Literacy and Education Commission and referenced in the National Financial Capability Challenge Educator Toolkit.
For questions and additional information, please contact Lois Kitsch at email@example.com or 414.793.1991.
About REAL Solutions®
REAL Solutions® is the signature program of the National Credit Union Foundation. REAL — ― “Relevant, Effective, Asset-building, Loyalty-producing” — Solutions works to help credit unions offer a wide range of products and services that have proven successful in serving working families with low wealth and modest means. Using product/business models created and tested by credit unions, REAL Solutions disseminates information to credit unions through special meetings, an online impact center at www.realsolutions.coop, and state and national conferences. As NCUF’s signature program over the past four years, REAL Solutions has been adopted in 40 states and is saving members tens of millions of dollars. It has now become a documented business strategy for credit unions to grow their memberships by serving the underserved. Real people with real needs are finding REAL Solutions at credit unions.
About the National Credit Union Foundation (ncuf.coop):
The National Credit Union Foundation is the US credit union movement’s primary national philanthropic program provider, fundraiser and grant-maker. Through NCUF grants and programs, credit unions provide widespread financial education, create greater access to affordable financial services, and empower more consumers to save, build assets, and own homes.
NCUF is funded primarily by investments in the award-winning Community Investment Fund (CIF) and by generous Corporate Supporters led by the Credit Union National Association and CUNA Mutual. All NCUF donors provide support that empowers NCUF and state credit union foundations to make a real impact in the credit union community.
The National Credit Union Foundation is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charitable organization. NCUF continues to earn the Better Business Bureau seal of approval as an “Accredited Charity” for meeting all 20 BBB Wise Giving Alliance Standards for national charities.