Supporting Financial Literacy
Since 2010, local students have experienced the economics of real life through our Reality Stores—brought to students from third grade through high school by Lake City Bank volunteers. We assign students a personal situation—married with two children, job as a nurse, income of $50,000, for example—and they select living choices and the expenditures that go along with them at different stations staffed by bank volunteers. For example, they have to choose renting or buying a home, for how much; what kind of car they will drive and if they can afford one; what they will spend on utilities; and even what will happen if they’re struck by a twist of fate, like a house fire or other calamity. Students learn how much it costs to run a household very quickly. Based on the family profile they’re assigned, they can see immediately how education affects income and lifestyle. Volunteers report seeing students’ “Aha” moments as they realize that choices made early on, like education, have a direct effect on how they can live. Schools appreciate Reality Stores too. The learning is experiential, and the Lake City Bank team provides everything needed for the turnkey event.
Our employees devote hundreds of hours each year to teaching young people about financial literacy, business and entrepreneurship with Junior Achievement. In 2020, 22,541 kids experienced Junior Achievement classes led by Lake City Bank volunteers. Classes included Biz Town; JA Our Cities, Our Region, Our Nation, Ourselves, Our Families; Economics for Success; Finance Park; Personal Finance; Global Marketplace and It’s Our Future.
Financial Wellness Partner Program
We’ve offered financial literacy resources to the community for decades. In 2019 we formalized a program to deliver financial wellness classes in a flexible way, so that class content and timing fit each audience’s needs. Classes on six topics ranging from budgeting to using credit to protecting your identity are available to employee and community groups. Lake City Bank employees lead the interactive classes, so that participants leave the class with actionable knowledge they can use right away. When the COVID-19 pandemic prevented in-person meetings, the program and its instructors pivoted to offer classes via Zoom. In 2020, Lake City Bank team members delivered 108 classes to participants around our footprint.