Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke's Speech Promotes Financial Education In A More Interactive, Visually Captivating Setting.

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The way in which Washington DC based Financial Education Program, CFEF, teaches Americans how to establish and maintain healthy financial habits was officially recognized in a speech today by Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke.

Community Finance Education Foundation

Financial Education supports the economic health of our nation, helping to broaden economic stability.

Community Financial Education Foundation (CFEF), a financial education program that teaches Americans how to establish and maintain healthy financial habits, was officially recognized in a speech today by Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke. Bernanke emphasized what many educators are arguing: That the format of education is vitally important and information is changing and is now received today using technology such as cell phones and computers.

CFEF has created a system, MyStartingPoint, to do what Bernanke has noted - teach financial education in a way that resonates with the current generation— lively, easy to understand web-based and with graphical interplay. MyStartingPoint has 30 four- minute videos that explain the fundamentals of credit, managing debt, making a budget, understanding banks, and numerous other finance-related topics. The videos have lively sound tracks as well as showcase local DC residents in local District of Columbia venues. Local DC residents who star in MSP Videos, also get free checking accounts.

CFEF's MyStartingPoint program is being used by Bank on DC, a public private partnership with local banks and credit unions, whose goal is to get users to graduate from the system and become eligible for a banking account. In a -2-year period, 4500 District residents did just that, according to program director Sybongile Cook. Bank-on DC users surveyed in April liked what they learned and are supporters of early financial education:

CFEF recently conducted a survey of its 11,000 users of MyStartingPoint in April, and found that 90 percent of respondents believe that financial education should be part of the high school curriculum. Furthermore, more than 61 percent of respondents believe it should begin in elementary school, and nearly 80 percent believe that parents have failed in providing financial education to their children.
“Studies show consumers with a firm grasp on their financial options and the consumer credit tools available to them tend to use their money in smarter ways, ways that benefit them in the long term. Our goal with MyStartingPoint is to provide fundamental lessons in the liveliest way possible, so the consumer is engaged, stick with the program and learns,” says Jane DeMarines, CFEF's Director/My StartingPoint sponsor.                                                                    

About CFEF

The Community Financial Education Foundation is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) national financial literacy foundation based in Washington, D.C. Founded in 2007, CFEF’s founders recognized the growing divide between the availability of consumer credit and the lack of financial education about these products, and more importantly, consumers’ understanding of their own financial situation. CFEF’s mission is to educate the American public and reach underserved communities by teaching meaningful financial life skills, encouraging positive financial behaviors, and providing access to outcome-based, educational resources.

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Jane Demarines
CFEF
(202) 997-8785
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