NILA members have applauded the recent announcement that U.S. Senators Maggie Hassan, D-N.H., Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., and Doug Jones, D-Ala., have introduced legislation to establish a competitive grant program at the U.S. Department of Education to help states build in-school financial literacy programs. The goal is to encourage community partnerships to promote financial literacy among school-age youth.
This initiative mirrors the work of many installment lenders, who prioritize financial capability training in the knowledge that “an educated customer is a good customer”. Installment lenders can only be successful if their loans are repaid in full. Underwriting and calculation of the ability-to-repay, help to ensure this, but time and time again, NILA members report that borrowers who are financially savvy, can budget efficiently and understand their obligations to the lender, can be relied upon to use their credit efficiently and repay in full, and on time.
NILA members support a number of financial capability programs including Dr. Rickie Keys’ Renewal Financial Services, which complements the Senate in-school initiative through the provision of financial coaching for those who have left school, particularly among minority populations. Coaching is focused on understanding how to secure employment and use financial services effectively in the outside world. The American Financial Services Association Education Foundation (AFSAEF) is also a favorite of NILA members, with its comprehensive MoneySKILL program, direct support for the national Jump$tart Coalition and the resources it provides on its website (click to view a downloadable PDF file of a leaflet from the Personal Loans 101 program “Understanding Small Dollar Loans”)