The Desjardins Youth/Adult Financial Education Awards recognizes leadership within the credit union movement on behalf of youth/adult financial literacy. They consider all activities supporting the personal finance education of members and nonmembers, including, but not limited to, face-to-face teaching, publicity, lobbying for curriculum requirements, teacher and volunteer training, and promotion and use of the NEFE High School Financial Planning Program® (HSFPP).

Naming these awards after Alphonse Desjardins emphasizes the movement's long-time commitment to financial literacy. Besides founding the first credit unions in Canada and the U.S., Desjardins pioneered youth savings clubs and in-school "banks," known as caisses scolaires.

For more information on the Desjardins Awards, including secrets of a winning entry, click here.​

2017 Winners - Youth

ASSET CATEGORY: $50-$250 million
1st place: Afena FCU
Youth Financial Literacy Program
Afena FCU hosted financial education programs that focused on giving kids a head start learning about banking basics. The programs are customized to fit each group the credit union engages with such as Upward Bound, a program through Indiana Wesleyan University that serves high school students from low-income families, potential-first generation college students, and students who have a high risk of academic failure, and the Marion High School JROTC.
 
ASSET CATEGORY: $250 million-$1billion
1st place: Financial Center First CU
Improving the Lives of Today’s Youth
Financial Center First CU employs two full-time staff members to lead financial education efforts, connecting with community centers and other not-for-profit organizations, churches, schools, and more. The educational program aims to reach as many people in the community as possible and answer questions about finances, with particular emphasis on guest lectures at Indianapolis-area schools. The credit union uses a combination of interactive financial workshops and partnerships, such as the IMPD & Me program, working with Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department to reach inner city families.
 
2nd place: Crane CU
Franklin Middle School Reality Store
Crane Credit Union created the content and hosted a life simulation exercise for eighth grade
students at Franklin Middle School. Students were given a profession and income, and had to
create a household budget to simulate real-life experience. Volunteers from the credit union
and Franklin community put on the simulation for nearly 500 students.
 
ASSET CATEGORY: $1 billion or more
1st place: Purdue FCU
Purdue Federal Credit Union Financial Literacy
In 2017, 15 staff volunteers made classroom presentations to more than 500 students elementary through high school. The credit union uses Banzai, providing free tools to teachers and students. More than 2,700 workbooks were supplied to students last year. Outside the classroom, Purdue FCU participated in the Purdue Athlete Life Success Program (PALS), a free camp dedicated to providing sports, fitness, health, and life instruction to area youth who may not otherwise be able to participate in a summer camp. The credit union made interactive financial literacy presentations to more than 400 campers in keeping with the camp’s “Oregon Trail” theme in 2016.

2017 Winners - Adult

ASSET CATEGORY: $50-$250 million
1st place: Afena FCU
Claire the Afena Blog Mom
Afena FCU is located in a high-poverty area where many people could benefit from basic financial education, such as balancing a checkbook or managing a budget, but it wasn’t able to reach these people in a traditional way.  The credit union started Claire, the Afena blog mom, as a way to offer financial advice in a friendly, entertaining way. Claire is a working wife and mother of three children, with a dog, just trying to navigate daily life and the financial challenges it can sometimes present. Claire has a strong Facebook page as well as a blog on the credit union’s website.
 
ASSET CATEGORY: $250 million - $1 billion
1st place: Financial Center First CU
Improving the Financial Lives of Adults through Financial Literacy
Financial Center First CU employs two full-time staff members to lead financial education efforts, connecting with community centers and other not-for profit organization, churches, schools and more. Of note is the partnership with St. Vincent DePaul and St. Jude Food Panties to directly provide financial counseling to those trying to break the cycle of poverty and achieve financial self-sufficiency. There were 202 individuals served through these new relationships alone in 2017.
 
2nd place: Via CU
H2O Community Classes
Via CU was made aware that citizens in the Marion community needed assistance with their monthly water bills. The City had partnered with the Salvation Army to create the H2O Community fund that provided assistance to qualifying individuals. An important component that was missing from the program was the educational piece to assist individuals in breaking the cycle of needing assistance. As a result, Via CU partnered with the local utility company and the Salvation Army to provide budget building tips to those seeking financial assistance for their water bill. Classes are held at the credit union on Saturdays.
 
Honorable Mention: Partners 1st FCU
Laying a Foundation in Personal Finance Management with Young Adults at Local Colleges
Partners 1st FCU goes into multiple classrooms at three Fort-Wayne area colleges and universities to provide information on a variety of topics including credit scores, money management, credit cards, identity theft, auto & home buying and tax preparation. In addition to educating in the classrooms at Ivy Tech, IPFW and the University of St. Francis, the credit union also works closely with the TRiO programs at the schools. TRiO Support Services is a federal outreach and student services program designed to identify and provide services for individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds. The program offers assistance to low-income and/or students with disabilities as they pursue a college degree. A part of this program is helping these students with financial literacy.

2016 Winners - Youth

ASSET CATEGORY: $50-250 million
1st Place: CrossRoads Financial FCU
CrossRoads Youth Advisory Board
 

2016 Winners - Adult

ASSET CATEGORY: $50-250 million
1st Place: Afena FCU
Claire, the Afena Blog Mom
 
ASSET CATEGORY: $250 million - $1 billion
1st Place: Financial Center First FCU
Adult Financial Literacy
 
ASSET CATEGORY: $1 billion and more
1st Place: Teachers CU
TCU Financial Empowerment Program - High School
 
ASSET CATEGORY: $1 billion and more
1st Place: Teachers CU
TCU Financial Empowerment Program - High School

2015 Winners - Youth

ASSET SIZE: $150-500 million
1st Place: Tech CU
Hey Scouts!
 
ASSET SIZE: $500 million+
1st Place: Financial Center First CU
Education Equals Empowerment for Youth
 
2nd Place: Purdue FCU
PALS Financial Literacy Days 
 
Honorable Mention: Indiana Members CU
IPS #44 Student Incentive Program 
 

2015 Winners - Adult

ASSET SIZE: $150-500 million
1st Place: Via CU
Seminars in the Community
 
ASSET SIZE: $500 million+
1st Place: Financial Center First FCU
Education Equals Empowerment

2014 Winners - Youth

ASSET SIZE: $150-500 million
1st Place: Finance Center FCU

2014 Winners - Adult

ASSET SIZE: $150-500 million
1st Place: Finance Center FCU

2013 Winners - Youth

ASSET SIZE: $150-500 million
1st Place: Finance Center FCU
Youth Financial Education

2013 Winners - Adult

ASSET SIZE: $150-500 million
1st Place: Finance Center FCU
Adult Financial Education

2012 Winners - Youth

ASSET SIZE: $150-500 MILLION
1st Place: Finance Center FCU
Youth Financial Community Outreach
 
ASSET SIZE: $50-150 MILLION
1st Place: Indiana State University FCU
Tiger Cubs Pack #17
 

2012 Winners - Adult

ASSET SIZE: $150-500 MILLION
1st Place: Finance Center FCU
Adult Financial Community Outreach
 

2011 Winners

ASSET SIZE: $150-500 MILLION

1st Place: Finance Center FCU
Financial literacy in the community and a guiding strategies for serving members and the community.

ASSET SIZE: $500 MILLION OR MORE

1st Place: Centra CU
Commitment to improving financial literacy in the community

ASSET SIZE: $150-500 MILLION

1st Place: Finance Center FCU
Incorporating financial education in Indianapolis-area high schools

2010 Winners

ASSET CATEGORY: $50-150 MILLION

First Trust CU
CU in School provides a realistic, student-based point of view on gaining financial literacy

ASSET CATEGORY: $50-500 MILLION

Finance Center FCU
In an age of multi-tasking, multi-faceted strategy employed to educate high school students

2009 Winner

ASSET CATEGORY: OVER $250 MILLION

First Place: Finance Center FCU
Financial Literacy and Student Credit Union Program

2008 Winners

ASSET CATEGORY: $35-75 MILLION

First Place: Independent FCU
AEF/IFCU Grant for Economics

ASSET CATEGORY: $75-250 MILLION

First Place: REGIONAL Federal Credit Union
Setting Goals and Establishing the Groundwork for Good Money Habits

ASSET CATEGORY: OVER $250 MILLION

First Place: Finance Center Federal Credit Union
Financial Literacy & Student Credit Union Program

2007 Winners

ASSET CATEGORY: $250+ MILLION

First Place: Eli Lilly Federal Credit Union
Creative Ways to Teach Children and Parents About Money Concepts

ASSET CATEGORY: $35-$75 MILLION

First Place: Indiana State University Federal Credit Union
Working with Junior Achievement to Present Economics 101

2006 Winners

ASSET CATEGORY: $20 TO $80 MILLION

First Place: Perfect Circle CU
Financial Education Roadshow

Second Place: Evansville FCU
“Together, we’ll make it happen.”

ASSET CATEGORY: OVER $200 MILLION

First Place: Bayer FCU
NEFE education program at the Bashor Children’s Home

2005 Winners

ASSET CATEGORY: $20-$80 MILLION

First place: Perfect Circle CU
Youth Financial Literacy

ASSET CATEGORY: MORE THAN $200 MILLION

First place: Purdue EFCU
PEFCU at School

Honorable mention: Indiana University EFCU
High School Financial Literacy

2004 Winners

ASSET CATEGORY: $20-$80 MILLION

First place: Evansville FCU
Multiple projects for youth financial literacy

ASSET CATEGORY: $200 MILLION AND MORE

First place: Purdue EFCU
Multiple projects to develop youth financial literacy

Second Place: MidWest America FCU
Children and Money Workshops

Honorable Mention: Evansville Teachers FCU
Credit union youth projects, work with community groups

2003 Winners

ASSET CATEGORY: $80 TO $200 MILLION

First Place: Marion School EFCU
 

ASSET CATEGORY: MORE THAN $200 MILLION

First Place: Centra CU

Second Place: Professional FCU