SPIRE Credit Union is honored to have received both the Youth and Adult 2017 Desjardins Financial Education Awards. Sponsored by the Minnesota Credit Union Network (MnCUN) and the Credit Union National Association (CUNA), the awards recognize leadership in financial literacy within the credit union movement.
The Youth Desjardins Award was received for the partnership between SPIRE and an Elk River High School (ERHS) DECA class on the Future Finance Academy program. On day one of the interactive program, 96 ERHS students pre-tested on core financial concepts at an accuracy rate of 39%. On day four, the same students post-tested at an accuracy rate of 90.93%; an increase of over 190%! The DECA students went on to win third place in the state DECA competition; winning a trip to the national competition in California.
For the third consecutive year, SPIRE also received the Adult Desjardins Award for its commitment to educating adults throughout Minnesota on financial topics. Throughout 2016, a record-setting 1,052 adults from varying needs and sectors of society were reached with over 110 classroom hours. This is a 64% increase over the preceding period and is higher than any preceding year of SPIRE offering financial education.
The 10th year was truly the “banner year” of the SPIRE Youth and Adult Financial Literacy Outreach programs. Since its inception in 2008, SPIRE has reached over 4,700 individuals in nearly 500 classroom hours.
“SPIRE believes that it is our duty to provide financial education to adults and youth,” states Bridget Petersen, SPIRE Financial Literacy Coordinator, “Our efforts strive to empower people to become financially successful and thrive throughout life.”
With these honors, the youth and adult financial outreach programs will go on to be reviewed at the national level where they will be considered amongst financial education projects from credit unions across the country.
“The amount of time and dedication SPIRE employees give to these initiatives is impressive,” says Dan Stoltz, SPIRE President & CEO, “SPIRE employees truly live and breathe our mission of improving lives within our communities!”
The awards are named in honor of Alphonse Desjardins, the founder of the "North American credit union movement," by establishing the first "people’s bank" in Quebec in 1900 and helped establish the first American credit union in 1909. Desjardins strongly believed in the value of teaching children to save.
Photo: SPIRE Staff with Elk River High School DECA Team at the 2017 State DECA Awards
(L-R) Abby Patterson (SPIRE); Joey Hess, Ellie Trubenbach, and Amanda McDonald (ERHS DECA);
Dan Stoltz (SPIRE CEO); Logan Gacke, Macee Pearson and Evan Christianson (ERHS DECA);
and Bridget Petersen (SPIRE)