FDIC Partners With Operation Hope to Promote Financial Education

The FDIC today said it has partnered with the nonprofit Operation Hope to promote financial education to minority and women-owned businesses. Through the partnership, Operation Hope will use the FDIC’s Money Smart financial education resources to help teach how to do business with the agency.

The partnership extends a relationship between the organizations that began in 2001. Through the continuing partnership, the FDIC will recognize the nonprofit as a member of its Money Smart Alliance, provide the curriculum to potential instructors and provide technical assistance in integrating and promoting the program.
The FDIC is also providing training for Operation Hope’s staff on how to teach the curriculum through “train-the-trainer” sessions and help the nonprofit identify types of outreach initiatives to educate minority and women owned businesses on how to do business with the FDIC.

The FDIC created the Money Smart financial education curriculum recognizing the importance of financial education for people with little or no banking experience. The program has now been adopted by an alliance of more than 1,400 financial institutions and community based partners across the country.

FDIC Chairman Jelena McWilliams highlighted the importance of financial education last week during a webinar with the National Bankers Association about advancing diversity and inclusion across financial services. “If you’re an African American kid growing up in an inner city someplace and the educational system is not that good, how are you going to know that your credit score is going to be the difference between being able to finance that first car or not? And that first car gets you to a job, and that job promotes financial inclusion, and hopefully, over time, generational wealth building,” McWilliams said.

During the event, McWilliams also spoke about the FDIC’s initiatives to support minority depository institutions and community development financial institutions, like the establishment of the Mission-Driven Bank Fund to provide capital to MDIs.

Through the fund, private investors, including corporations, financial institutions and philanthropic organizations, can support mission-driven banks that support low- and moderate-income, minority and rural communities. Mission-driven banks—including MDIs and community development financial institutions—will be able to pitch the fund for potential investments to help them provide affordable financial products and services and stimulate economic and community development.

“By encouraging major corporations and huge banks to support the mission-driven bank fund, she’s put in motion a mechanism that could provide tier one capital to our sector for generations to come,” said NBA Chairman Robert James during the webinar.