Virginia Educators Credit Union won a 1st Place Award in the state-level Desjardins Youth Financial Education program. The Desjardins Award, sponsored by the Virginia Credit Union League and the Credit Union National Association, honors credit unions for their commitment to teaching personal finance basics to young people.
The credit union was recognized for several financial education initiatives, including its student credit union programs at three elementary schools, its work with Junior Achievement in presenting lessons on personal finance basics to young people, participation in local schools' "Career Days," and its Summer Reading Challenge, which encourages kids to save by rewarding their efforts to read books.
"At Virginia Educators Credit Union, we believe it's critical that young people learn good money management skills and understand basic financial concepts," said Sharon Conti, the credit union's CEO. "Through our programs, we look for ways to make financial responsibility engaging and interactive, with the goal of teaching life lessons that speak to the importance of saving for the future and spending money wisely."
The credit union also reached high school students this past school year through career day events that provided students an understanding of the skills needed to pursue careers in financial services, along with offering information on the products and services most commonly offered in today's marketplace.
This year marked the credit union's sixth consecutive 1st Place Desjardins Award at the state level. It has, in years past, also earned Desjardins Awards at the national level.
Virginia Educators Credit Union is a full service not-for-profit financial institution that has been exclusively serving teachers, students, PTA members, alumni, and their family members in the cities of Newport News and Williamsburg and in the counties of Gloucester, Isle of Wight, James City, Mathews, and York since 1954. Learn more about the credit union online at www.vecu.org.
The award is named in honor of Alphonse Desjardins, the founder of the North American credit union movement, who established the first “caisse populaire” (people’s bank) in Quebec in 1900, and helped establish the first American credit union in New Hampshire in 1909. Desjardins was an ardent believer in the value of teaching individuals to save, and he promoted the idea of in-school savings programs (caisses scolaires).