Monday morning was — well — magical. While I was in London on business, my senior team at Operation HOPE was assembled with Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens, former Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, Atlanta Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Lisa Herring, and leaders from throughout the city — for the soft launch of the new HOPE Children’s Savings Account Program at APS!
The HOPE Children’s Savings Account Program was dreamed up originally and approved by then Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and the Atlanta City Council, who approved it unanimously last November, 2021. It is designed for each qualifying Kindergarten student to receive a $50 deposit into a bank account, managed by Operation HOPE, with additional contributions being made throughout the child’s graduation through the APS system — to high school graduation.
The result should be money the then young adults can use to pay for higher education, place a down payment on a home, start a small business, etc.
Operation HOPE, working closely with new Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens and APS Superintendent Herring, added a ‘wrap around’ financial literacy educational program to augment the savings accounts — so that young people receive an ‘active lesson’ in their on financial literacy. Citi was also brought in by Operation HOPE to manage the actual accounts through a specially designed FDIC insured bank vehicle, and we are likewise thankful for their involvement.
This program is already a model for the nation, but there are program additions to come that will inspire all, and help many more. Stand by for that.
In the meantime, it’s time to build!
John Hope Bryant