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Financial Education—A Day of Impact: A Message from the President & CEO

Sep 12, 2019

Brett MartinezImagine the impact of all 700 Redwood Credit Union employees going out to local high schools on a single day to provide much-needed financial education. This month, RCU plans to do just that.

On October 14, our dedicated employees will come together for a unique Day of Impact, where RCU’s entire workforce will be deployed to 20 schools across Sonoma, Napa, Mendocino, and Marin counties to help high school students learn essential money management skills through our Bite of Reality event. On this first-of-a-kind day, we’ll reach an estimated 3,570 junior and senior high school students, preparing them for life through financial literacy.

Bite of Reality is an interactive role-playing event, supported by a hands-on app-based simulation that appeals to teens while giving them a taste of real-world financial challenges. Students are given a fictional occupation, salary, spouse and family, student loan debt, credit card debt, and medical insurance payments. The teens then walk around to various table-top stations to “purchase” housing, transportation, food, clothing, household necessities, day care, and other essentials. Fortunately, the game also includes a credit union station to help with their financial needs if they overspend.

This interactive event will teach teens how to make financial decisions and give them a better understanding of the challenges of living on a budget. Teens will be prompted to weigh their wants versus their needs as they experience high-pressure sales tactics and face the realistic costs of utilities, childcare, and other everyday expenses. There’s even a “Fickle Finger of Fate” that bestows unexpected expenses or windfalls—just like in real life.

RCU has been running our Bite of Reality program since 2013 at schools and youth groups throughout the communities we serve, reaching more than 12,000 students to date. We believe financial literacy is a vital life skill that every student has the right to learn so they can make wise money management decisions as they enter adulthood, and throughout their lives. Our Day of Impact effort is one way we hope to help them succeed.

Best regards,

Brett Martinez

President & CEO

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