United Way introduces personal finance courses for foster kids


In an era when most parents are struggling to give their kids a financial education, United Way has come up with a great idea to provide that information to older foster kids.

I read an article in The Sacramento Bee  about a new United Way program called Sense-Ability where foster kids are taught about the basics of money. They get instruction on how to do a monthly budget, how to buy car insurance, how to rent an apartment, and more.

When you think about it, so few young adults at age 18 are really ready to be out on their own. But foster kids are cast out into the real world at 18 whether or not they have the skills to cope.

Other elements of the Sense-Ability program focus on preparing a resume and attending financial literacy workshops. With the workshops, between 10 to 20 hours of classroom study are required on how to handle money.

I love this program because it addresses a challenge in all families — how to make lessons about personal finance come alive.

Editor’s note: This segment originally aired July 5, 2012.

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