Savings: Starting Young

Girl Scouts dressed up in their finest “Catch the $ave Wave” attire for a visit to Oregon Community Credit Union’s downtown Eugene branch.

If credit unions do amazing things every day to bring financial education and resources to their members, do they really need a National Credit Union Youth Week?

Gigi Hyland thinks so.

“You need to be telling the world about all the amazing financial literacy work you do,” the executive director of the National Credit Union Foundation says.

So cue the trumpets and unfurl the banners, because National Credit Union Youth Week 2014 was extraordinary in Oregon.

Girl Scouts dressed up in their finest “Catch the $ave Wave” attire for a visit to Oregon Community Credit Union’s downtown Eugene branch. Each of the credit union’s branches was decked out for this year’s beach theme, and young savers earned a chance to win $100 through the National Youth Savings Challenge.

Rivermark Community Credit Union asked parents how they motivate kids to save money, and then rewarded one random respondent with a $25 iTunes gift card. Some families said they use their piggy banks and “save, save, save.” Others took advantage of Rivermark’s Dollar Dog or Go! Money savings accounts. And others said they tried to set a good example by “not living outside of our means … and talking about it!”

Members under the age of 18 who opened a savings account or added to their existing account at Rogue Credit Union not only won a prize on the spot, but also were entered for a chance to win a free paddleboard lesson for themselves and a friend.

Buddy Bear deposited $1 into youngsters’ accounts when they opened their new accounts at St. Helens Community Credit Union. Buddy also handed out ice cream and hugs, and the kids went home with Cub Club boxes filled with a piggy bank and lots of goodies.

Wauna Credit Union deposited the first $25 into Jump Start Club accounts for its new young savers, and every new club member was entered into a drawing for $250. The credit union also entertained its members with online links to fun videos by The Disclosures that helped explain why credit unions are WAY BETTER than banks.

Central Willamette Community Credit Union invited young members to come in for cookies, conversation, and a coloring contest, and young Clakamites found yummy treats, cool prizes, and balloons waiting at Clackamas Federal Credit Union.

The credit unions of Oregon and Washington not only improve their members’ lives, they are foundational to the entire Northwest economy. Learn more here.

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