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The New Gallup-HOPE Financial Literacy Index Will Empower At-Risk Youth with the Financial Wisdom Needed to Thrive in America and the Global Business Stage

 Jim Clifton and John Hope Bryant
ATLANTA–(BUSINESS WIRE)–On April 7th, under the backdrop of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, Operation HOPE (HOPE) Founder, Chairman and CEO John Hope Bryant along with Gallup Chairman and CEO Jim Clifton announced the creation of the Gallup-HOPE Financial Literacy Index. This first of its kind index will measure youth's relationship to financial literacy, how they envision their future and provide them with targeted, impactful training so that they ultimately achieve their aspired financial goals.

“Helping America’s youth understand the financial system is an empowerment tool that bleeds over into every aspect of their lives”

“Helping America’s youth understand the financial system is an empowerment tool that bleeds over into every aspect of their lives," said Bryant. “And helping us get our hands around the perspective they have on this subject will help us help them.”

HOPE and Gallup understand that America’s youth are the future workforce and business builders of this country and that youth achieving their financial goals goes hand in hand with America realizing its economic potential and remaining competitive globally.

The Gallup-HOPE Financial Literacy Index will assess youth on their financial responsibilities and opportunities, evaluate their financial literacy and analyze how that relationship factors into their hope and wellbeing. The index will provide policy makers and community-based organizations with a tangible way to measure youth financial literacy and its impact on their communities and local economies. Gallup research has already proven that “hope” is a more powerful indicator of academic success and graduation than GPA and ACT scores. The new Gallup-HOPE Financial Literacy Index builds on this foundation, and recognizes that young people who do not understand the “language of money,” and who do not see opportunity in their lives, simply will not be successful over the long-term.

“Our children are in the playoff games of their lives with rising global economic powers,” notes Jim Clifton. “For us to compete successfully, we need to ensure that our nation is focused on new strategies and solutions that ensure all kids are ready for college, work, and life in the 21st century. That's why our partnership with Operation HOPE is so important, like the work both of our organizations do with the America's Promise Alliance; our goal is to give schools and communities a new metric for school and community competitiveness.”

In making this announcement, Bryant revealed that Operation HOPE will also create the HOPE Office of Research and Assessment. This new department will focus not only on tracking the Gallup-HOPE Financial Literacy Index statistics but also on collecting, assessing and analyzing data as it pertains to HOPE services and their measurable direct impact on youth, adults and the community at large.

This historic agreement between HOPE and Gallup builds on the larger framework established by HOPE and the Financial Services Roundtable (FSR) in June 2009, during the HOPE Global Financial Literacy Summit. That agreement solidified FSR’s commitment to work with HOPE in providing financial literacy education and support for the next five years. FSR is an organization that represents the largest financial services institutions in the United States, and whose CEO serves on its governing board of directors.

Gallup and HOPE’s commitment to this groundbreaking initiative will span the next five years and focus primarily on low-income areas where HOPE has a physical presence and deep commitment to equipping this generation with the full financial knowledge and expertise to thrive.

About Operation HOPE, Inc.

Operation HOPE is America's leading nonprofit social investment banking and financial literacy empowerment organization. With more than 400 private sector partners, 3,500 nonprofit organizations and schools, and 100 government partners in 69 major U.S. cities and seven provinces South Africa, HOPE has raised more than $500 million in its pursuit of educating, assisting and inspiring the next generation of global stakeholders in financial literacy, economic empowerment and silver rights. Through international initiatives and its principal programs, Banking on Our Future (teaching school children about money), HOPE Coalition America (Mortgage HOPE Crisis Hotline, 1-888-388-HOPE, financial emergency preparedness and disaster relief), Walk-in HOPE Centers (loans, computer literacy, understanding banking principles), and our 10,000 strong volunteer HOPE Corps, Operation HOPE has delivered services to more than one million low-wealth individuals and assumed the responsibility of piloting the Silver Rights Movement towards making free enterprise and capitalism relevant to all underserved communities. Ambassador Andrew Young, senior aide to Dr. King during the civil rights movement, serves as global spokesman for Operation HOPE and, along with music icon Quincy Jones, serves as co-chair of FIVE MILLION KIDS (5MK), an initiative aimed at breaking the high-school dropout epidemic in America. To learn more about HOPE, visit www.operationhope.org and www.5MK.org, or read our blog at www.operationhope.org/blog.

About Gallup

Gallup has studied human nature and behavior for more than 70 years. Gallup’s reputation for delivering relevant, timely, and visionary research on what people around the world think and feel is the cornerstone of the organization. Gallup employs many of the world's leading scientists in management, economics, psychology, and sociology, and our consultants assist leaders in identifying and monitoring behavioral economic indicators worldwide. Gallup consultants also help organizations boost organic growth by increasing customer engagement and maximizing employee productivity through measurement tools, coursework, and strategic advisory services. Gallup's 2,000 professionals deliver services at client organizations, through the Web, at Gallup University's campuses, and in 40 offices around the world. For more information please visit www.gallup.com.

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