SOURCE: Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Greater Dallas

April 15, 2013 16:26 ET

Bank On Dallas Presents Financial Fitness Greater Dallas April 20-27

Community and Corporate Partners in Dallas Will Host Opportunities to "Get Your Money in Shape" With Financial Literacy Classes and Seminars

DALLAS, TX--(Marketwired - April 15, 2013) -  April is Financial Literacy Month and Dallas communities will have the chance to get financially fit with a week of events during Financial Fitness Greater Dallas (FFGD), April 20 - 27, 2013. FFGD will be a week-long financial literacy and public awareness campaign pioneered by the Bank On Dallas initiative, the Mexican Consulate,FDIC, the City of Dallas Office of Economic Development, the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas,and community and banking partners in the Greater Dallas area.

To launch this week-long series of events, FFGD will commence the week with a Financial Fitness and Small Business Development Fair at the Bachman Lake Recreation Center, 10 am - 2pm. Admission is free and the public is invited to attend. There will also be fun activities for kids at the event including a DJ, bounce houses and more.

"It is with great pleasure that I am participating in this second year of Financial Education and the Business Development aspect of it for our community. I have been a long time supporter of providing financial education that can help our community become aware of the various services offered by the financial industry, the importance of financial planning, consumer awareness, family wealth building, the aspects of finances in micro and small business development, cash flows and how that impacts the personal and business life of our community. I am glad that there is a continued commitment by our Bank on Dallas partners to this continued effort to not only provide awareness but to continue the commitment of making information and resources a priority for the benefit of the community," commented Jerry Allen, District 10 City of Dallas Councilmember.

"We are thrilled to offer Dallas families the resources to help them get financially fit and understand what healthy financial habits can build for their future and our city," said Amber Krisher, FFGD co-chair and vice president American Bank, N.A.

In its second year, FFGD was expanded from last year's Semana de EducaciónFinanciera, hosted by the Mexican Consulate, to emphasize the importance of financial literacy and the need for the Greater Dallas community to be proactive about managing their money. The need for financial education is illustrated in a 2011 FDIC National Survey that showed 24.5 percent of all households in the state of Texas are under-banked and 11.7 percent are unbanked.

"As an elected official of the City of Dallas and as a member of the City Council Budget, Finance and Audit Committee, I am aware and concern myself with the City's finances. In addition, I also want to make sure that our community, including the Hispanic sector of the Community, is aware of their personal and business finances, for them to become familiar and understand the benefits of banking, the value of saving, planning for children's college education, establishing a good credit history, financial responsibility in purchasing a home, financial considerations in creating a business, and many more that impact the day-to-day quality of life of our community. That's why I would like to invite and encourage the community to come to the Financial Education and Business Development Fair to be held at the City of Dallas Bachman Lake Recreation Center, where there will be representatives from various organizations that will provide information about these and other related topics," commented Monica Alonzo, District 6 City of Dallas Councilmember.

FFGD will work as a collaborative education effort coordinated by dozens of organizations across Dallas and surrounding areas including businesses, financial institutions, schools, libraries, non-profit organizations, government agencies, municipalities and the media. Consumers are invited to participate in any of the financial literacy events scheduled during the week of April 20-27 across the Greater Dallas area.

"Improving your financial fitness is key to having less stress today and having a strong, secure family balance sheet for the future," said Greg Mangum, senior director of community economic stability at the United Way of Metropolitan Dallas. "I encourage everyone in our community to participate in a financial literacy class, get connected with a local bank or credit union, and begin achieving your dream for financial independence." 

FFGD is also part of a broader initiative to provide adequate access to financial services in over 40 cities in the U.S. As a part of this national effort the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas will host on a policy forum on April 22, 2013 to discuss relevant issues about financial literacy and economic inclusion. To learn more about the event and speakers or to register, visit www.dallasfed.org/cd/events/2013/13immigrant.cfm.

Higher unbanked and under-banked rates are particularly high among minorities and low-income households. At a national level, there are higher rates of Hispanic (14.7 percent) and foreign-born noncitizen households (18.9 percent) that have never had account, as compared to the general population.

"The Hispanic community in Dallas is currently facing many barriers to financial services and, as other minorities, are victims of scams and predatory lending. We believe that by providing all necessary resources and promoting financial inclusion we are empowering our community and promoting positive integration," said Consul Jonathan Chait at the Consulate General of Mexico in Dallas.

Sponsors for FFGD 2013 include Citi, Regions Bank, ViewPoint Bank, Wells Fargo, First Convenience Bank and Comerica. A complete list of FFGD events will be available at www.ffgd2013.org

ABOUT FFGD:

Financial Fitness Greater Dallas (FFGD) is a week-long financial literacy and public awareness campaign pioneered by the United Way of Greater Dallas' Bank On Dallas initiative, the Mexican Consulate and community and banking partners in the Greater Dallas area. FFGD was created to provide financial awareness and information during Financial Literacy Month, specifically the week of April 20-27, and to emphasize the importance of financial literacy and the need for consumers in the Greater Dallas area to be proactive about managing their money. Learn more at www.ffgd2013.org.

ABOUT BANK ON DALLAS:

Bank on Dallas is a partnership of private, public and community organizations working together to strengthen our community's economic well-being through improved access to high quality financial products, services and education. Bank on Dallas helps area residents save money and secure their finances by connecting individuals with affordable checking, savings and credit accounts, along with group and one-to-one opportunities to increase their financial knowledge and skills. The collaborative effort involves almost 50 local financial institutions and nonprofit service providers, led by the City of Dallas and the United Way of Metropolitan Dallas.

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