Over the next few weeks, we’ll be sharing more about CARE’s core values of empowerment, inclusion and collaboration. Our values are the guiding principles on how we fulfill our mission to prepare the next generation for financial success through volunteer-led education. Let’s get started by looking at our first value: empowerment.
At CARE, we believe knowledge is power. The best way to prepare the next generation for financial success is through financial literacy education. We strive to empower youths by sharing the knowledge and life experiences of our volunteers.
Empowerment is at the heart of CARE. Our volunteers give their time to ensure that young people have the information they need to make smart financial decisions. We hear time and again from teachers and parents, “Where was CARE when I was in high school?” Bankruptcy professionals know that many people have suffered simply because they lacked the knowledge they needed to be smart consumers of financial products.
How much do you know? Take the three-question CARE quiz.
True or False:
- If you are late in making a few payments on your credit card, your interest rates will increase sharply.
- If you miss one or two payments on your credit card, it will not impact your credit score.
- No one really looks at credit reports.
- True. For example, on one Platinum VISA card, the interest rate jumps from 4.9% to 30% if you pay late or miss even one payment. Late charges also accrue.
- False. That negative information can legally remain on your report for up to seven years.
- False. People who lend you money will almost always review your credit report, whether it’s for a car, home or credit cards. Most prospective employers also look at credit reports. You can receive free copies of your credit report each year at annualcreditreport.com, so be sure to check yours annually to make sure the information on it is correct.
Young adults need to understand — before they get their first credit card — that if they don’t care for their finances, they can end up paying more in the long term, losing out on job and housing prospects, and missing opportunities to build a better future for themselves.
Next week, we’ll look at our next value: inclusion.
About the Author
Tammy Hettinger serves as the CARE Executive Director. Her monthly series highlights several topics of financial education and news around CARE, such as the above volunteer profile. She lives in Alexandria, VA with her husband, two kids, and family cat.