Pricewaterhouse Coopers and Operation HOPE have mobilized and trained hundreds of PwC Interns this year, educating and impacting thousands of young people in the power of financial literacy empowerment, through Operation HOPE's award winning Banking on Our Future program. Below is an example of our work in just one week in Operation HOPE, Denver.
Pricewaterhouse Coopers and Operation HOPE had a very successful week educating 65 at-risk youth in Denver, Colorado. Working in partnership with each other, Operation HOPE and 16 PwC summer interns educated young adults age 14 to 22 on the importance of banking, budgeting, credit cards, loans, and checking accounts. In addition, the PwC interns led an empowering conversation around dignity, and the significance of living their lives in a respectful manner. Strong and emotional personal stories were shared, and relationships were formed between the interns and the at-risk youth almost immediately. Overall, the students left the Banking on Our Future class with an understanding of the financial industry and its products, a sense of self-respect, and, perhaps most importantly, the students left with new friends and a sense of empowerment that will undoubtedly change their lives for the better.
The 65 youth that were taught came from various backgrounds including juvenile detention and probation centers, foster homes, diversion programs, and broken families. In addition, none of the students will graduate high school due to their high truancy rates. Despite the differences between the educated interns and the at-risk minority students, the interns were engaging and it was easy for the youth to interact and participate in activities. In addition, the youth often asked the interns questions about their jobs, the paths they took in life, and their education. I also believe that the event served also as a strong mentoring program.
Overall, the program was a huge success. The interns were well prepared and enthusiastic the entire week! The mission of HOPE was achieved through the successful partnership with PwC. I believe the experience was one that positively affected both the lives of the youth and the lives of the interns.