North Shore Credit Union (NSCU) has taken piggy banks to a whole other level for children with the introduction of an innovative financial literacy program called Wishbank. This program is the first of its kind in Canada to introduce basic money management concepts to kids in their primary school years based on a unique three-part piggy bank. It is also the core of a comprehensive first experience for children when they open an account at NSCU.
The Wishbank program is based around a hands-on piggy bank comprised of three colorful compartments. These compartments are categorized for saving, spending and sharing. It includes a passbook to help keep track of deposits and withdrawals, also a guide for parents to assist children with their first steps in financial planning.
Each slot will allow children to allocate their money in order to achieve their goals, and develop a basic understanding of good money habits.
Basic money management skills tend to elude children for many years, and at times they learn about it too late in life.
The Wishbank program includes an in-branch component; when children are ready to open their first account, NSCU will help make their experience a positive and memorable one. In addition to receiving a Wishbank, a member service representative will give a quick tour of the branch, which includes a trip to the vault where they will receive 3 loonies to start their Wishbank and an introduction to the branch manager who will provide a personal welcome to the organization’s newest member.
NSCU is also partnering with educators to incorporate the Wishbank into the Grade 2 math curriculum. The North and West Vancouver School Districts, as well as several private schools will be using the bilingual Wishbank as a creative way to teach basic money concepts.
Wishbank is free of charge to child members and to school, and it is available at all 11 NSCU branch locations.
Personally I find this to be a great idea to help teach basic money management concepts to children.
“My six-year-old daughter was delighted to receive her Wishbank and deposit her first allowance cheque last week. My little member is now proudly hoarding her savings. She is also looking forward to donating her accumulating “sharing” stash to a charity of her choice at Christmas.”
Mother of Charlotte, age 6
What I love the most with the Wishbank program is that it allows children to have a bigger role in what they do with their money. They have the ability to allocate their money, and use it accordingly.
NSCU plans on making Wishbank part of an ongoing initiative for children who open new accounts.
Since the financial meltdown in 2008, there has been a growing interest to increase the level of financial literacy in children and youth. NSCU recognized this and decided to launch Wishbank, enhancing the experience children have when they bank with NSCU.