We don’t need to look very far to see how the current financial crisis is affecting students, families, our communities, our country, and the global economy.
This year’s Money Smart Week, which takes place through April 25, will feature more than 450 free financial education classes, seminars, and activities all across the City of Chicago. The event is designed to raise awareness about the many services around the city that can help families who are concerned about their finances but aren’t sure where to turn.
Events generally run until around 8:30 p.m. View a list of all the Money Smart Week sessions.
Financial habits are learned from example. So it’s important for parents and/or guardians to discuss money matters with their children. This not only instills knowledge but also prepares students to be informed consumers and citizens of their communities.
Here are a few additional ideas to guide you through this tough economic environment:
- Try to attend a Money Smart Week session. Chances are you will meet families who are going through the same thing you are. Share ideas and learn what works for you and your family.
- Create a personal budget. This is critical to raising awareness of what money is coming in and out of your household. The budget provides a clear overview of where and how much money you save and spend on a daily basis. You can find budget examples online.
- Set goals. Try to save a little each month. The Office of the City Treasurer recommends setting aside anything you can and putting it into a bank account.
- Don’t be afraid to ask the tough questions. Visit or email a finance professional to discuss ways to budget your finances. He or she can go over savings and other options for you and your family.
- Contact the Office of the City Treasurer. They can also offer additional savings and budgeting advice.
- And of course, always look for ways to cut costs. The Chicago Public Library offers an array of free services at each of its locations. It includes DVD rentals, computer usage, resume and job help, and free magazine subscriptions. The cost? It’s all free with a library card.
Learn more about Money Smart Week.