April is not only a time to welcome spring, but also a time to celebrate and recognize the importance of financial education and financial capability as a way to build a person’s financial well-being. April is recognized as National Financial Capability Month. National Financial Capability Month provides us an opportunity to spring into action with our financial well-being plan by checking to see if we are on a path to achieving our financial goals.
One way to spring into action is to keep a spending diary. A spending diary is a tool that allows us to track our daily spending over a period of time, usually a week or a month. Each day, it is important to write down everything you spend money on and the amount. For example, if you bought a coffee or soft drink and paid $2.00 for the item, you would include that in your spending diary. It is important to write down every single item that you have spent money on. Do this for an entire week. It is then suggested that you keep a spending diary for a second week. At the end of the week compare the two weeks of spending. Look to see if you were able to decrease your spending. Were there items that were needs versus wants that you could eliminate? This could help you reduce your spending.
For example, instead of buying a coffee at the coffee shop, think about making coffee at home to save the $2.00 some days. The extra money you save can then be used to pay down debt, put into a savings account or be used to do a fun activity. By keeping a spending diary, you can see how you have decided to spend your money.
We challenge you to spring into action during National Financial Capability Month by keeping a spending diary for the next two weeks. You can download the spending diary here. Keep a spending diary, for the next two weeks (minimum 7 days), and then share your story with us. Those individuals who complete the challenge, and share their story with us by May 9th by completing the form below, will be entered to win one of five $20 gift cards.*
Upward to Financial Stability is a three-year initiative to increase the awareness of financial stability opportunities for people with disabilities. The initiative is funded by the North Carolina Council on Developmental Disabilities and is led by National Disability Institute and The Collaborative.
Michael R. Roush, M.A., AFC® is the Director of the Real Economic Impact Network at National Disability Institute (NDI) and serves as a subject matter expert on financial capability strategies for persons with disabilities. Mr. Roush provides training and technical assistance across the country on Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA), financial education and other asset development strategies to empower individuals, organizations and other stakeholders on the importance of economic self-sufficiency for persons with disabilities. Mr. Roush is an Accredited Financial Counselor and has a Master of Arts in Human Behavior.
*NCCDD Council Members and staff are not eligible to for the drawing. NDI will award the gift card as an incentive offered through NCCDD’s Upward to Financial Stability initiative.
Did you keep the challenge for upto two weeks (minimum 7 days)? Submit details about your experience in the form below by May 9th, and you will be entered to win one of five $20 gift cards!