The Center for Financial Empowerment is a non-profit 501(c)(3) charitable agency whose mission is to educate underserved youth and families in the principles of personal finance. The Center partners with schools and community organizations in Southern California and Southern California to offer financial education, assistance, and improvement programs, giving people the power to make better financial choices and achieve an improved quality of life. SCE Federal Credit Union is the primary supporter of the Center for Financial Empowerment.
News Article | May 30, 2017
David Nieper Ltd has been one of Alfreton's largest employers for 55 years and one of the few British fashion houses that has never taken production overseas, but has instead prioritised creating jobs for local people and more recently prioritised educating local children. By becoming the first UK fashion business to sponsor a school and investing significantly in broadening skills across the community, the business is tackling both education failure and worklessness, two of the most detrimental social issues identified by CSJ in their 'Breakthrough Britain' report, making this visit from Iain Duncan Smith and Andy Cook especially poignant. The Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) was established as an independent think-tank in 2004 to put social justice at the heart of British politics and make policy recommendations to tackle the root causes of poverty. The CSJ is best known for its major Breakthrough Britain reports which identified five pathways to poverty - family breakdown, educational failure, worklessness and dependency, addiction and serious person debt. "The David Nieper Academy is exemplary in the way it has tackled the skills shortage in its local area by training up young people in readiness for employment. "Not only does the British manufacturing industry benefit, people living in the community have the opportunity to gain the skills they need to get a job and progress with their career. "It is well known the best route out of poverty is through work. Work also provides a regular routine, a means of interaction with a community, a stake in society and a sense of purpose. "I hope many other businesses see the enormous advantages in investing in our young people so they can fulfil their potential and British manufacturing can thrive in the years to come." Christopher Nieper, Managing Director of David Nieper Ltd and the founder of the David Nieper Education Trust, believes the only way to secure the future of the business and the town's economic future is to invest in skills. Alfreton is a former coal mining town and within the 'travel to work' area of Derby, which has been identified by the Government as a social mobility cold spot - i.e. an area with a higher concentration of low paid jobs, low skilled jobs and lower school attainment standards. The David Nieper Education Trust aims to develop the methodology to turn around a persistently underperforming secondary school (historically in the bottom two percent for attainment) whilst delivering career ready, employable young people for jobs, apprenticeship and further education. The ultimate goal is to ensure that young people in Alfreton have as much opportunity to progress in life as those living in other parts of the UK. "We are delighted to welcome Iain Duncan Smith and Andy Cook here today, and appreciate their recognition of our endeavours to help secure the future of Alfreton through education and skills. All young people regardless of background should be capable of living fulfilling and productive lives - we are hoping to help them achieve this through our work at the school. "Similarly, through the development of skills within our own business we are equipping local people with all the skills they need to find gainful employment both within our own company and further afield." David Nieper works with education at every level, supporting primary schools, secondary education at the David Nieper Academy (built for 850 pupils), sponsoring university bursaries, chairing the government's Trailblazer for the National Apprenticeship standards in sewing and garment technology and their own in-house sewing school. For further information on David Nieper visit https://www.davidnieper.co.uk/ For further information on The Centre for Social Justice visit http://www.centreforsocialjustice.org.uk/
News Article | May 30, 2017
More than one hundred students at Duarte High School in California put their personal finance skills to the test during the Center for Financial Empowerment’s “Mad City Money,” a real-world simulation event for teenagers. During Mad City Money, students are assigned a life scenario, complete with career, debt and insurance payments – even a spouse and children. They also received unexpected windfalls and had to visit stations to pay for housing costs, just as in real life. “Fate Cards” with different monetary expenses were distributed at random to teach students to prepare for bumps in the road. “I had to learn what I could have and what I couldn’t. It was all a matter of if we could afford it,” said Duarte High School senior Lizbeth Lidstrom. “In real life, I work two jobs. This helped out a lot – I learned where I could put the money I work hard for.” Lidstrom said that one of the take-away points from the Mad City Money event was that she plans to start putting more money into her savings for college. Other stations were set up to simulate additional expenses – including food, cars, electronics, clothes and childcare costs. A credit union station was available to help teens make better financial decisions and show them the importance of budgeting effectively. Additionally, students were taught to be on the lookout for fraud by keeping track of their simulated belongings. Players who dropped items, like their debit cards, fell victim to fraud and were penalized. “I think it’s important because it gives the students real life financial planning experience,” said Duarte High School career technical and small business entrepreneurship teacher Amy Bustos. “The students get the exposure of what it is like in real life – how to spend and budget their money correctly for basic survival in order to provide for their families.” While financial education courses are not currently a prerequisite for high school graduation in California, studies have shown that students who’ve taken economics and personal finance courses are more likely to save money and pay off credit card bills in full each month. These teenagers are less likely to be compulsive buyers, max out credit cards and make late payments. “We realize the importance of providing students with a solid education about personal finance before they enter the workforce or go off to college,” said Abby Ulm, manager of the Center for Financial Empowerment. “Interactive courses like Mad City Money teach them financial literacy as a means to better help them prepare for real world expenses.” For more information about the Center for Financial Empowerment, visit http://www.center4fe.org/. ABOUT CENTER FOR FINANCIAL EMPOWERMENT (http://www.center4fe.org/) The Center for Financial Empowerment is a non-profit 501(c)(3) charitable agency whose mission is to educate underserved youth and families in the principles of personal finance. The Center partners with schools and community organizations in Southern California and Southern California to offer financial education, assistance, and improvement programs, giving people the power to make better financial choices and achieve an improved quality of life. SCE Federal Credit Union is the primary supporter of the Center for Financial Empowerment. SCE Federal Credit Union was founded in 1952 and currently has approximately 50,000 members, $650 million in assets, several Southern California and Southern Nevada branch locations, thousands of shared branch locations across the United States, and nearly 30,000 surcharge-free ATMs available to members. SCE FCU serves Southern California and Southern Nevada, with membership open to individuals and businesses, and is a not-for-profit entity committed to improving the financial well-being of the communities it serves, especially people underserved by mainstream financial institutions. With a strong commitment to volunteerism, employees donate hundreds of hours to local community causes each year. Additionally, the creation of the Center for Financial Empowerment provides much-needed financial education to the underserved and high schools in Las Vegas, Nevada and in Duarte, Baldwin Park, Boyle Heights, Ontario and Lynwood, Calif.