Bucks volunteers help students up their financial game
This October, we announced a new and exciting partnership with the Milwaukee Bucks and BMO Harris Bank to expand our Money Sense program in 11 schools. In addition to financial support for the mission of SecureFutures, the Bucks organization is living out its commitment to teen financial literacy by encouraging its employees to give of their time as SecureFutures volunteers. Currently, seven Bucks employees serve as volunteers in the SecureFutures Money Sense program.
Joe Zidanic, Senior VP of Finance with the Bucks, is excited about how the Money Sense program allows him to share his professional finance knowledge with the next generation. “Far too many youth grow up not understanding the basics of finance and banking,” Joe said. “I want all people to be independent and having financial literacy and tools at their disposal is the first step in that process.”
Joe is proud that the Bucks organization is committed to having a positive impact in the local community. “Professional sports teams are stakeholders in the community markets they play in,” Joe said. “The Bucks organization recognizes their responsibility to be a leader in many aspects of City of Milwaukee, surrounding Counties and throughout the state of Wisconsin. The Bucks encourage their employees to be part of that process through their “Volundeerism” program.
Laurie Baldwin, an Accounts Payments Specialist for the Bucks, is also serving as a Money Sense volunteer. “I feel it is important for teens to be empowered with financial education so that they are able to make good decisions now that will help them in the future,” Laurie said. “It is important for us to be involved in partnerships like this because of our presence in the community. This will help us to bring awareness to the program and hopefully not only more financial sponsors but also more volunteers to be a part of teaching the students.”
For Laurie, the most meaningful part of volunteering for SecureFutures is giving students opportunities to learn things she didn’t.
“I made some pretty big mistakes in my own life with my own finances that I know I wouldn’t have made if there were a program like this offered in my high school. For me no one was there to teach me about any of the things I taught the students. I didn’t know how to create a budget, I had no idea the bad decisions I made at 19 and 20 would affect my credit for years to come and cause me trouble when I went to go buy a house,” Laurie said. “I wanted to be able to share with the students the mistakes I had made so they could possibly avoid making those same mistakes.”