By Rose Oswald Poels
Bankers are known for supporting their communities in a wide variety of ways — yet if there is one cause that is central to our industry, it is financial literacy. WBA-member bank leaders were recently sent a letter in the mail asking you to consider supporting the impactful financial education efforts of the Wisconsin Bankers Foundation (WBF), the non-profit arm of the Wisconsin Bankers Association. This Giving Tuesday, I am repeating this request for your generosity.
A recent study by Edward Jones and Morning Consult showed that nearly half of respondents (44%) were 25 years or older when they gained the majority of their personal finance education, and only 20% of respondents reported learning about financial education in school. The need for financial education is clear, and the good news is that bankers have been coming together for years through the Wisconsin Bankers Foundation to make a meaningful impact. Please see the Year in Review for programming highlights from WBF.
We are proud to report a more than 120% year-over-year increase in the number of elementary school ‘Teach Children to Save’ presentations given with our Reading Raises Interest Kits, and a more than 130% year-over-year increase in the number of applicants for our Spring Scholarships. To keep this strong momentum going, we rely on the generosity of donors like you. Because of WBF’s public charity status, donations may be tax deductible. Our goal is to raise $70,000 for the 2023–2024 fiscal year, and there are three easy ways for you to contribute:
- Send a check to the Wisconsin Bankers Foundation, 4721 South Biltmore Lane, Madison, WI 53718,
- Donate online at wisbankfoundation.org/donate, and/or
- Use the pledge form to donate an item for our silent auction, which will be held online as well as in person at the WBA Bank Executives Conference, February 7–9, 2024.
Your contribution will enable us to continue to:
- Provide complimentary Reading Raises Interest Kits to teach the importance of saving money at a young age,
- Award scholarships to current and upcoming college students with interests in the banking industry,
- Provide comprehensive and comparative data on the banking industry through Banconomics.com,
- Honor bankers and industry leaders for their engagement with financial literacy, and
- Offer grants to support outstanding non-profit financial education programs across the state.
Thank you in advance for considering adding your name to the list of our supporters or renewing your commitment. Your contribution — of any size — is not just an investment in financial literacy; it is a commitment to empowering individuals, families, and Wisconsin communities with the knowledge and tools they need for a secure and prosperous future.