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Financial literacy is one of the core values at First National Bank & Trust and because of that we support TS Institute. TS Institute is made possible by First National Bank and Trust Company’s mission to reinvest 10 percent of its pre-tax income back into the community. The non-profit was created in 2009 to collaborate with school districts and promote financial literacy, with a goal to provide programming to students in grades K-12, equipping students with knowledge to make sound financial decisions. The TS Institute presence is in each market place of TS Banking Group and within that state’s regions including Iowa, Nebraska, North Dakota, and Illinois. In 2019, the TS Institute connected individually with students, teachers, and adults over 69,000 times through our classroom visits, teacher workshops, community events and in-school banking programs.

In the United States today, families are faced with critical financial decisions now more than ever. The TS Institute is a resource to help families handle decisions concerning the economy, education and most importantly, personal finance with expertise. We are taking a long-term approach to solving financial pain while helping create a more financially savvy future generation.

In 2017, TS Institute expanded to Central Illinois and hired Connie Unruh, Financial Literacy Coordiator, who is located at Frist National Bank and Trust. Connie’s past experience consists of financial advising, money coaching, and accounting before joining the TS Institute.

Below are some of the ways TS Institute is present in the First National Bank and Trust Company area. 

Money Mentoring

TS Institute is providing free mentoring appointments to help families who may be struggling with their finances or just need a little help putting a spending plan together and sticking to it. If you would like to schedule a free appointment, please contact Connie Unruh at 217-935-7464 or [email protected].    

Adult Financial Literacy Workshops

Free adult financial literacy workshops are offered in the community in cooperation with the Warner Wellness Center, the Neighborhood Care Center and local churches throughout the Central Illinois area. If your organization would like to host a free workshop, please contact Connie Unruh at 217-935-7464 or [email protected].

Money Smart Week- April 4-11, 2020

TS Institute is chairing this week-long event in De Witt, Piatt and Logan Counties. Programming is offered in the community and at local schools to help consumers better manage their personal finances. All programs are free of charge. For more information about this program click here: http://www.moneysmartweek.org/.

2020 First Place Winner: Justyn West. Read his essay here.
2020 Second Place Winner: Peyton Moore. Read her essay here.
2020 Third Place Winner: Pheonix Bieber. Read her essay here.

Money Mammals

De Witt, Piatt and Logan County kindergarten classes are learning from the Money Mammals how to save, share and spend smart. This class includes a lesson and a TS Institute piggy bank for the students to save at home.

Piggy Bank Pageant

De Witt, Piatt and Logan County elementary classes participate in an annual Piggy Bank Pageant that teaches the students the power of saving. Students get to design their own personal piggy bank and compete for the best design. The winning designs will get a cash prize and start their savings.

Essay Contest

De Witt, Piatt and Logan County high school students participated in an essay contest in conjunction with Money Smart Week. Students wrote a short essay on this year's national topic, "If an investor gave you $25,000 to solve an economic issue in your community, what would you create to help solve the problem?” The essay winners were Justyn West, 1st place - $100, Peyton Moore, 2nd place - $75 and Phoenix Bieber, 3rd place - $50.

Next year’s application will be available on this website sometime in February 2021.

Economics Everywhere Poster Challenge

De Witt, Piatt and Logan County elementary and middle school students participate in a Poster Challenge every fall. The students are given an economic concept and accompanying financial lesson. Then they illustrate a poster with an example of the economic concept. The winning designs are put into a wall calendar for their school.

Choices

The Choices program in designed to help students make positive choices that will increase their career and life opportunities. This interactive decision-making workshop for middle schoolers is focused on keeping teens in school, motivating them toward their education and future and introducting them to practical life skills to help them succeed.

Junior Achievement

Students in kindergarten to 8th grade in Clinton, DeLand Weldon and Blue Ridge Schools are experiencing Junior Achievement thanks to TS Institute and its commitment to providing financial literacy education to all area students. Junior Achievement is the nation's largest organization dedicated to giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success, plan for their futures and make smart academic and economic choices. All lessons align with Illinois state standards for Economics and Financial Literacy.

Future Smart

Middle school students in Bloomington are learning how to make wise financial choices for themselves and their friends in this interactive class.

Entrepreneur Camps

Camp for middle school students is planned for June 1 - 5 this summer in conjunction with the Vault Community Center and 4-H. This popular camp teaches incoming 5th through 9th grade students how to work in teams to take an ideas and turn it into a thriving business! Due to current stay-at-home restrictions, this camp may be rescheduled for later in the summer or postponed until a later date.

For more information about these financial activities and how to get them implemented at your school or organization contact Connie Unruh, The First National Bank and Trust Company at [email protected] or (217) 935-7464.

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