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NCUF Released Financial Education Report

Landmark Report Result of Comprehensive Data Collection by NCUF to Show Impact of CU’s Financial Education Efforts

For the first time, credit unions now have quantitative data to illustrate how the credit union movement is making a difference through financial education and counseling. The National Credit Union Foundation (NCUF) through its REAL Solutions™ program just released a free online report entitled “Credit Unions: Focused on Financial Capability Across the Nation,” which is the result of an almost yearlong data collection effort by NCUF with the help of state credit union leagues.

In an effort to help the credit union community understand the depth and breadth of existing programs, NCUF and REAL Solutions conducted a comprehensive national study of credit-union provided member and consumer financial education and counseling. The data derived from this study will be useful to state leagues/associations and the broader credit union industry because it quantifies the extent to which credit unions are providing opportunities for members/consumers to advance their financial knowledge and decision-making skills.

“Credit unions invest millions of dollars to provide financial education and counseling programs that touch millions of lives,” writes Bucky Sebastian, NCUF Executive Director, in the report. “Against a fragmented landscape where each credit provider is seeking maximum gain, not-for-profit credit unions continue to be true to their mission of serving as trusted advisors to their members and communities.”

Click here to download the full report at no-cost. The full report is available as a single document and each state section is also available as a separate document (all are in .PDF format).

Report Highlights – 1.6 Million Consumers Reached
The report also reveals significant findings, such as (note that all figures correspond to calendar year 2010):
   • 1.6 million consumers received financial counseling and/or advice through a credit union;
   • Credit union representatives presented more than 24,000 educational sessions to over 600,000 students in classrooms across the nation using high quality resources designed in accordance with state
     and national curriculum standards;
   • 111,500 student members had $34 million on deposit at 1,400 in-school credit union branches that encourage savings and connect financial education with financial access; and
   • Credit unions invested $140 million during 2010 toward improving the financial capability of members and consumers in general.

Report Contents – Case Studies, State Profiles, Keys to Success & More
“Credit Unions: Focused on Financial Capability Across the Nation” describes ten financial education/counseling interventions offered to members/consumers by credit unions. It provides cumulative data about member use of and access to credit-union provided financial education/counseling products, tools, and courses, and it reveals probable keys to program success. National data is supplemented by case studies of credit unions and state leagues/associations that illustrate each type of educational intervention. Finally, an overview of financial education/counseling programs at credit unions within each state provides a comprehensive look at the varied and numerous educational outreach efforts geared toward credit union members and consumers in general.

Data & Survey Information
The data on which this report is based was collected through an online survey of U.S. credit unions. Data collection began in March 2011 and continued through year-end 2011. This report is based on information submitted by 576 credit unions of all asset sizes. They represent 8% of all U.S. credit unions, and 27% of all U.S. credit union memberships as of December 2010.

This report is one of several ongoing projects to assist credit unions with educational program development, measurement, and implementation. In the coming years, NCUF and REAL Solutions will continue to gather and publish data about credit union provision of financial education/counseling.

Questions or Report Hard Copies…
For questions and additional information or to order hard copies of the report, please contact Lois Kitsch by email  or by phone at (407) 616-2409.