While politicians and commentators are busy finding people and institutions to blame for out-of-control government spending and irresponsible lending practices, Central Bank of Kansas City is focusing its efforts on teaching Kansas City citizens how to take control of their personal finances and be responsible consumers. Beginning with its co-sponsorship of the first annual Financial Fitness Week in 2008 (renamed Money Smart Week); Central Bank has helped present educational programs to hundreds of adults, teens and children.
Money Smart Month is in April and is sponsored by Central Bank of Kansas City along with the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, United Way, FDIC, Catholic Charities and others. In 2013, it included 463 educational events designed to encourage sound financial behavior. There was a 31% increase in participation in 2013 with a total of 12,155 attendees at all the events, including Teach Children to Save.
During Money Smart Month, classes focus on such important topics as budgeting, living on a fixed income, home buying, investing, credit reports, digging out of debt, alternatives to payday loans and small business ownership. Participants also learn about the financial education services available for Kansas City area residents. In 2013, Central Bank of Kansas City presented 14 events with 228 participants and involved many officers in the bank. For more information or to find workshops, go to www.moneysmartkc.org.
Central Bank is also involved in many other programs promoting financial education including Next Step KC, Kansas City Saves, The United Way Financial Stability Task Force, K.C.'s Financial Tools Task Force, ABA Teach Kids to Save Day, and ABA Get Smart About Credit.
Churches, schools and non-profits are just some of the places where we teach workshops to help the community become better educated in personal financial matters. We have presented to the following organizations: Awesome Ambitions (9th grade urban high school girls), Don Bosco High School, Don Bosco Senior Center, Newhouse Shelter for Women, St. Mark's Child Care Center, Garfield Elementary, Wendell-Phillips Elementary, Scuola Vita Nuova Charter School, Green Works, Lincoln College Prep Academy, HEDC, Freedom Schools, Urban Ranger Corps, Alta Vista High School, Penn Valley Community College, Plaza de Niño's Preschool, Police Athletic League, Culinary Cornerstones, Don Bosco Family Center, Mattie Rhodes Family Center, Family Conservancy, Manuel Technical Center, and the Boys and Girls Club of Kansas City.