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Utah Saves Challenge: Believe in your future

By | Posted - Feb. 28, 2011 at 5:58 p.m.

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Monday's Challenge: Bookmark the website and continue your positive financial behavior. Monday marks the final day of the Utah Saves campaign and the beginning of the Believe in Your Future Campaign.

The campaign is supported not only by a fun mascot, but more than 40 partners from banks to religious organizations to non-profits.

To kick off the program, Utah legislators met Bill, the mascot for the Believe in Your Future Campaign.

"Bill will help build awareness of the importance of financial education and savings and will help make savings for the future fun and exciting," said Senate Minority Assistant Whip Pat Jones.

Bill Crim, vice president of United Way Salt Lake's Community Impact, and State Treasurer Richard Ellis explained the "Believe in Your Future" campaign.

Many indicators of household financial health show that too many of us are not saving enough for retirement, have too much debt, and lack the financial tools we need for a secure and prosperous future, according to Crim.

United Way's research has shown that while most of us understand the importance of budgeting, making wise credit decisions, and saving for the future, these things remain ongoing challenges for families in our state.

"While there are many resources available to help people, we've found that it is difficult for families to easily find trusted resources that make it simple for people to get the help and encouragement they need."

Ellis said, "This is why we've formed a unique public, private, and non-profit sector collaboration called the Utah Council on Financial and Economic Education."

Jones has championed financial literacy in Utah schools, and now financial accountability for Utahns of all ages. She believes it's a crucial cause because Utah has "one of the highest foreclosure rates in the nation, one of the highest bankruptcy rates in the nation, and many workers lack savings and investments."

Jones says because we expect government to be fiscally responsible, it follows that the government should expect the same from us.

In 2009 the Legislature passed a resolution creating the council, to be chaired by the state treasurer. This collaborative effort involves more than 40 separate organizations working together to help Utahns gain the financial tools they need to thrive.

"Our overall goals are to create easy access to financial education programs and reinforce positive financial behaviors, such as saving money," Ellis said.

Council members have spearheaded the Utah Saves Challenge over the past several days to raise awareness about financial education and to encourage Utahns to take control of their financial future.

The results of the Utah Saves Challenge over the past week will be announced later this morning in an event at the Capitol, which will also serve as the unveiling of a new campaign -- Believe in Your Future, and the new web portal It's designed to make it easier for Utahns to find and take advantage of available tools and resources.


Story written with contributions from [](mailto:adickson@ksl.comAmanda Dickson.>)

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