The Edwards community participated in an Air Force-wide effort to encourage financial responsibility the week of Feb. 25-28, known as Military Saves Week.
The event is a collaborative effort between the Airmen and Family Readiness Center, the Armed Forces Bank and Edwards Federal Credit Union.
Tables were set up in the Exchange with materials regarding student loans, debt management, credit card use and identity theft.
“We encourage you to make a pledge, a saver’s pledge that you are going to save so much money a month or a pay period as you can,” said Linda Crump, Airmen and Family Readiness Center, Community Readiness consultant.
In addition to signing a pledge, visitors to the table were invited to sign up for an appointment for a budget analysis at the Airmen and Family Readiness Center.
“The budget analysis is probably the most valuable piece because a budget analysis gives you tangible information that you can work with and know where you are financially and it will help you to build your financial wellness step by step,” said Crump.
For those who missed the event, Crump is available for budget analysis appointments year round. To prepare for an appointment, Crump asks that person, civilian or military, bring their leave and earnings statement.
“We can’t do anything unless we see how much is coming in,” said Crump. “You need to be very much aware of your financial situation what you have going out and what you have going in. Then we sit down and look at things we can cut, things we can add and then we make the adjustments together as a team.”
Crump financially counsels people in all different kinds of financial situations. Some are looking for ways to enhance their financial wellness while others come in financially strapped looking for ways to fix their situation.
“I recommend in my counseling on a day-to-day basis that an individual has three savings. I believe you need to have a day-to-day operational savings, an emergency savings and a long-term savings, so it’s very essential that we look out for the here-and-now, the unexpected and the future.”
Visitors to the Military Saves booth also found literature on improving credit scores and buyers guides for used cars and homes. The Edwards Federal Credit Union encouraged saving with a drawing for a piggy bank.
“[Military Saves] is important because sometimes we lose focus of savings,” said Crump. “This way we have specials and offers and things that we can use to help you get started, not only for the military worker, the civilian worker, but for the family as a whole. So it’s very important to stimulate that thought process to get back into saving.”
For more information, drop by the Airman and Family Readiness Center in the old Conference Center building, or call (661) 277-4662.