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Arizona Central Credit Union Makes Award-Winning Financial Literacy Program Free for Local Classrooms
Banzai Teaches Students Money Management Through Real-Life Scenarios

Phoenix, AZ (April 1)--Local students are getting a free education in how to manage their money. Arizona Central Credit Union is working with Banzai, a national award-winning financial literacy program, to make curriculum available to Maricopa, Pima, and Coconino County schools completely free.

"Banzai is a web-based financial literacy program. Kids get their own accounts, and they work through assignments that are based on real life," Morgan Vandagriff, co-founder of Banzai, said. "But because Arizona Central is sponsoring it, local schools get it for free. More than ever, it's important that kids develop sound financial skills to prepare them for the real world, and Arizona Central realizes that and they're doing something about it."

Banzai is an interactive, online program supplemented by printed workbooks which aligns with state curriculum requirements for personal finance education. In 2010, the Institute for Financial Literacy awarded Banzai the Curriculum of the Year award. It has become the largest program of its kind, servicing more than 10,000 schools in all 50 states.

Students using the program are exposed to real-life scenarios where they learn to pay bills and balance a budget--but it’s not always easy. Students must learn to manage unexpected expenses such as parking tickets, interest charges and overdraft fees. The educational program also introduces students to auto loans, bank statements, entertainment costs, savings and more.

“Too often students get out of school and they just aren't ready for the financial roller coasters life can give us,” Vandagriff said. “Banzai teaches students to navigate those twists and turns and come out on top.  We're excited to work with Arizona Central to improve financial literacy in Maricopa, Pima, and CoconinoCounty.”

Teachers interested in using the Banzai program can visit azcentral.teachbanzai.com or call 888-8-BANZAI.

About Arizona Central Credit Union

Founded in1939, Arizona Central Credit Union is a not-for-profit cooperative serving 60,000 members across Arizona with full-service financial solutions. Current assets exceed $400 million backed by a 75-year tradition of financial strength, stability and service. Deposits are federally insured up to $250,000 by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA).To learn more, visit http://www.azcentralcu.org/.

About Banzai

Banzai is an award-winning, financial literacy program that teaches high school and middle school students basic, financial concepts through real-life scenarios. Banzai began in 2008 and was awarded the Curriculum of the Year Award from the Institute of Financial Literacy in 2010. The online program is used in all 50 states by more than 10,000 schools.

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