Altra Federal Credit Union in Tyler hosted two free camps this past week to teach children about money management.
Chris Burgess brought his daughter Keren to Money Smart Camp Wednesday, and it was her third time to attend one of the camps. He said it’s a fun summer activity she looks forward to.
“She likes money,” Burgess joked.
The Money Smart Camp, for ages 11 and 12, teaches budgeting and needs-versus-wants through educational and hands-on activities. Attendees learned about topics like how money is made, with one exercise on spotting counterfeit bills. They also practiced calculating the cost of a grocery list.
Burgess said the camp’s goal to teach children how to save is a good life lesson and that Keren has learned to save a little bit at a time.
Money Smart Camp is a continuation of Cash Camp, which is for ages 8 to 10 and focuses more on money basics and the importance of saving, said Danielle Anderson, youth program supervisor for Altra Federal Credit Union.
“Starting at that young age, it helps because the more that they learn that and the more that they do it, the more successful they’ll probably be when they’re older with managing their money,” she said.
The camps have been offered in Tyler for six years, with the exception of last year. Anderson said the plan is to continue hosting the camps each June.
“We just love that it’s open to the community,” Anderson said. “We have a bunch of people who have registered that are not members with us, and we’re A-OK with that. We just want to help kids grow and help them learn and do what we can for them.”