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Financial education outreach to San Diego military community
San Diego's Military Saves Campaign brings Consumer Action and several financial empowerment resources to area military bases
Consumer Action’s outreach staff was present and accounted for during the 2012 Military Saves Campaign events held on San Diego-area military bases in March. Naval Base Point Loma, Camp Pendleton Marine Base, Naval Medical Center San Diego and the Naval Air Station on Coronado Island were among the bases where Consumer Action’s Nelson Santiago distributed consumer and financial education publications to military service members and their families.
Visitors to Consumer Action’s exhibit table picked up publications on establishing and improving credit, saving to build wealth, avoiding identity theft and successful homeownership. Publications on telecommunications topics were also popular, including those offering tips on choosing mobile devices, using mobile data wisely, avoiding telemarketing fraud and saving money on television services. Santiago also fielded questions and offered information and referrals to service members looking for additional guidance on freezing their credit reports, buying used cars, coping with identity theft and starting micro-businesses.
During the on-base events military members and their families received a wealth of information, not only on basic money management but also on more advanced topics, including long-term investing. At Camp Pendleton, Marines were provided investment related publications created by FINRA. These included FINRA’s comprehensive booklet, “Money & Mobility for Military Members” featuring an expanded investment section, as well as investor alerts cautioning about the risks of pyramid and Ponzi schemes and “free lunch” investment seminars.
At one of the Navy events, held at Murphy Canyon Chapel, sailors and their families were treated to a special presentation by George Chamberlin, host of the San Diego area “Money Matters” television and radio programs (aired on NBC Channel 7 and KOGO Radio 1070). Chamberlin’s presentation was engaging, inspiring and filled with investment tips. He encouraged service-members and their families to invest, emphasizing that investing did not require a lot of money to get started and that rewards would come over time especially if investors actively work to keep expenses down when investing. Military families listened attentively and jotted down Chamberlin’s recommended reading list which included, “The Millionaire Next Door” by Thomas Stanley and William Danko and “One up on Wall Street” and “Beat the Street” by Peter Lynch. More of Chamberlin's free tips and advice can be found at these websites:
- San Diego County Credit Union (Money with George Chamberlin)
- KOGO Radio (George Chamberlin page)
- NBC San Diego (Money Matters with George Chamberlin)
Darryl Stovall, personal financial management program manager with Navy Fleet and Family Support Center, expressed appreciation for Consumer Action’s participation in the Military Saves Campaign. Stovall pointed out that money management education at the yearly event is important because there’s no formal financial literacy component for new servicemembers. “It’s our job as a community to educate and prepare service members for today’s financial climate,” Stovall explained. Consumer Action agrees! We’re proud to have served San Diego’s military community during the weeklong campaign for financial empowerment.
Consumer Action’s participation in the 2012 Military Saves Campaign was made possible by a grant from Chase to support our Veterans Project.
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