Chairman's Corner

The importance of budgeting and saving is a basic key element of survival for our next generation in today’s changing competitive world. Our economic future depends on the decisions they will make. Without awareness and proper programming the end result will affect the future of our economy. The My Kid Biz program provides youth, from all walks of life, with an annual comprehensive program that focuses on:

Overall Financial Awareness
College planning

Many ask me, ‘Why are you so passionate about this program and how did it start?’ I tell everyone the story about how I was standing in the account holder line at my banking institution with my then six year old daughter and looked over and realized that the non-account holder line was much longer. The sad part was that this line had lots of parents with their kids. It dawned on me, these kids could grow up thinking that the non-account holder line was the appropriate line to be in because their parents or guardians stood in that line. That felt wrong to me and more importantly, a pattern and trend was now creating a less than favorable future for generations that would follow me. After reading her bedtime story and placing her to bed that evening, I went to another room and thought about my financial future. It dawned on me that my future was fast asleep in the other room and I had to do everything in my power to use the resources that I had and knew to secure her future and thus, I created the format for the My Kid Biz Program.

The inaugural My Kid Biz Program was launched in Memphis, Tennessee in 2001 with the help of a national non-profit organization whose mission is to serve our youth of tomorrow. The My Kid Biz Program continues to be a mainstay in the greater Memphis area. The program has impacted over 1,000 children since its inception in 2001. The biggest reward from this program is the testimonials of our parents, once their children complete our program seminars. At our first event, parents walked up and began hugging me and saying thanks to all of the volunteers who gave their time and effort to help their children. That was the greatest feeling in the world to me.
The objective of My Kid Biz is to provide sound, actionable educational programs with a direct focus in the area of financial literacy. It is our duty and responsibility to guide future generations into a financially successful world. We must start this trend today so each succeeding generation will be more and more financially successful.

I am proud that our program continues to expand across the nation with the overwhelming support of our volunteers, corporate sponsors, and The Friends of Omega Foundation. This continues to prove that there are many people that want to ensure our children’s financial success.
It is becoming increasingly important each day that our children garner the knowledge necessary to pass onto the next generation. The need for financial knowledge is even more apparent because of the challenges that our country faces economically.

Each day, hundreds of thousands of kids across our country struggle with the challenge of managing their lives. Their primary challenges of school, family and friends are more than some can bear. However, the biggest challenge is still in front of them; how to control their finances. It has been recorded that teens spend over $175 billion dollars or $104 each per week on retail goods. These numbers are troubling and trending in the wrong direction because the majority of our youth have never participated in a formal financial literacy program. Without proper financial training, our upcoming generation will learn more about the school of hard knocks than appropriate savings and spending habits. These youth will soon become adults with poor money management skills. It is now, and will continue to be a severe problem if they are not taught the ABC’s of money management. My Kid Biz is one of the leading financial literacy programs in the country. The My Kid Biz Program is waiting with open arms for all of them. Send them our way.

Isiah Reese, Chairman and CEO, My Kid Biz Program