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From Literacy to Action: Empowering Teens for Financial Wellness


A young man typing on a laptop.

Image caption: . Teens are eager to take control of their finances, with 80 percent expressing that more knowledge about money management would lead to a more positive outlook.

In today's dynamic economic landscape, financial literacy is more than just understanding concepts—it's about taking action. Junior Achievement champions this philosophy with the theme "From Literacy to Action." Our mission is clear: to equip individuals, especially young people, with the tools and confidence needed to navigate personal finances effectively.

The significance of financial capability cannot be overstated. It's not merely about grasping theoretical knowledge but about applying it to improve one's financial situation and, ultimately, one's life. JA recognizes the pivotal role of financial education in shaping a brighter future. Through our comprehensive programs, we empower individuals to move beyond literacy and take proactive steps toward financial empowerment.

Teens today face unique challenges when it comes to financial wellness. According to research conducted by Junior Achievement USA and Citizens, financial stress weighs heavily on young minds. Concerns about money top the list of stressors for many teens, with 78 percent feeling the pressure, often fueled by the financial challenges their families face.

The impact of family money stress is profound. Nearly three-quarters of teens see their family's financial situation as a barrier to their own future goals. Many witness their parents working longer hours, borrowing money, or even fighting over finances. It's no wonder that nearly two-thirds of teens believe their future happiness hinges on their future earning potential.

Despite these challenges, there's a glimmer of hope. Teens are eager to take control of their finances, with 80 percent expressing that more knowledge about money management would lead to a more positive outlook. They're interested in financial literacy classes, yet there's a gap between interest and access. This is where JA steps in.

Through our learning experiences, supported by partners like Citizens, we're making strides in bridging this gap. Our approach gives students the tools they need to achieve economic security as adults. Research results speak volumes—82 percent of JA Alumni agree they have a strong financial footing, and 68 percent are financially independent of their parents by their late twenties.

Moreover, JA Alumni report significant milestones like paying off student loans at age 30 and purchasing their first homes at age 29, well ahead of national averages. This demonstrates the tangible impact of financial education in shaping the financial futures of young people.

At the heart of the “From Literacy to Action: Financial Capability” campaign is a commitment to fostering financial confidence and empowering lifelong healthy financial decisions. We believe that by providing practical, hands-on learning experiences, we can equip teens with the skills and mindset necessary to navigate the complexities of personal finance effectively.

From concerns to confidence, from literacy to action—this is the journey we embark on with the next generation, empowering them to shape their financial futures with purpose and resilience. Together, let's build a generation of financially capable individuals ready to thrive in an ever-changing world.

Select a button below to see how you or your organization can get involved with Junior Achievement of Camden/Wilcox.

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