OneUnited Bank’s promotion of “Financial Literacy for Youth” has reached several important milestones in 2011.  In February, OneUnited Bank President and Chief Operating Officer Teri Williams released her new children’s book entitled “I Got Bank!” The book is the centerpiece of OneUnited Bank’s new initiative to promote financial literacy for urban youth. The bank has already donated books to over 250 schools and libraries in thirty-four states, and continues to offer free books to libraries and schools through its web site

In addition, OneUnited Bank has launched a partnership with the Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy® a coalition of organizations that work to advance financial literacy among students from pre-school through college. Recently Ms. Williams conducted financial literacy workshops at the Hurley and Hernandez schools in Boston with Jump$tart for Project ALERTA, an award winning youth program to improve the educational opportunities and achievement of Latino students in the Boston Public Schools.

The bank has also joined Operation HOPE in Boston and Los Angeles to present our Banking on Our Future five-hour financial literacy curriculum for schools and youth groups. Bank managers delivered presentations at Madison Park High School and the Thurgood Marshall Middle School in Boston and Los Angeles respectively. In Los Angeles, OneUnited Bank and Operation Hope are combining I Got Bank! with the “Banking on Our Future” curriculum.

“We enjoy teaching financial literacy to area school groups,” Ms. Williams stated. “The reactions – from principals, teachers and students – have been enthusiastic and reinforcing.  We are on the right track.”

In conjunction with the release of the book, OneUnited Bank is sponsoring the “I Got Bank!” Essay Contest. To enter, children must write an essay about financial literacy. The bank will award three winners a $1,000 savings account in August 2011. The official rules for the essay contest, as well as information on how libraries and schools can receive a free copy are available here.