Kathy Dilmore works at First Heritage Federal Credit Union in Elmira Heights as the Vice President of Marketing, and said the bank is invested in the young people of the Southern Tier. The bank sponsors an online program called Banzai which is used by almost 20,000 teachers nationwide.
“It’s so important to start that at a young age so they form those good habits. Good habits of savings stay with them as they become older adults and they move through the different life stages,” said Dilmore.
Michael Sanfratello is a Guidance Counselor at the Corning Painted Post High School Learning Center and has been using the Banzai program to teach his students for five years.
“I hope that they will take the learning they have got here and just apply it to the bigger picture,” said Sanfratello.
He said many of the high school students who he’s teaching are working at their first part time jobs.
“They’re finding, for the first time they are getting a paycheck and it’s disappearing pretty quickly,” said Sanfratello. “So teaching them to budget helps them know how to spend that so that they have money left over for other things too.”
The online program makes understanding budgeting something the teens can relate to by using real life examples of budgeting and saving to make finance relatable.
“I get a lot of positive feedback about this bounds a program with my students so I think the more financial literacy we can put into a child’s education, I think the better off there going to be,” said Sanfratello.
Dilmore said learning about finance early means avoiding debt, plus responsible money managing into adulthood.
“The sooner you start educating and teaching about financial literacy the better chance that those people will have in sustaining financial soundest throughout their life,” said Dilmore.