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Making Money Smart Students

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Piggy bank

Money Smart Week, which will be celebrated this year starting on April 21, is a national initiative of ALA and the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago to provide financial literacy programming to help members of your community better manage their personal finances.

But teaching financial literacy does not have to happen only during April. Here are a few ideas to help promote financial literacy and make money smart students any time of year. 

Thrifty Kitchen

Participants learned how to make holiday gifts from what is readily available in their kitchens.

Ronda Rex, a family and consumer science specialist with the University of Kentucky Cooperative, guided participants in making holiday gifts using simple ingredients found in most any kitchen. The program was held on a Thursday in mid-December at 3:30 p.m. 

Ronda talked about ways to save money by creating homemade gifts for friends and family and how the savings could pay future dividends. She showed us how to decorate mason jars filled with trail mix and how to make a cocoa mix placed in plastic bags and decorated to look like reindeer.

Financial Literacy Workshops for New Americans

Experts from ASIA Inc. teach financial literacy to a Nepali-speaking man.

Lakewood has historically been a very welcoming place for new Americans. Our area recently saw an influx of new residents from Southeast Asia, so we decided to host a financial literacy class for Nepali and Burmese-speaking people.

We regularly work with a group called Asian Services in Action (ASIA Inc.), so we decided to reach out to them since they had the expertise needed for the workshops. We held the program at our Madison branch, which is located in a neighborhood where a lot of immigrants settle. 

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