The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and financial literacy non-profit, Operation HOPE, Inc. have announced an agreement to collaborate on an initiative to help educate minority and/or women-owned businesses (MWOBs) on how to do business with the FDIC. This effort expands on a longstanding relationship between the agency and Operation HOPE that goes back more than two decades.
- The FDIC and financial literacy non-profit, Operation HOPE have announced collaboration on a program to help educate minority and/or women-owned businesses about the FDIC.
- The program will use the FDIC's Money Smart curriculum as its main platform.
- The goals of the agreement are to promote financial education, promote economic inclusion, and increase consumer access to affordable credit.
- The FDIC has agreed to make the Money Smart curriculum available to Operation HOPE, including technical support, training, additional collaboration, outreach, and access to third-party events.
- Operation HOPE will provide the FDIC access to train and share information with clients, publish educational materials, link websites, deliver the Money Smart curriculum, and provide it to instructors.
- The agreement also provides for ongoing evaluation in order to determine the effectiveness of the program.
Financial Education and Access to FDIC Contracts
The basis for this new collaboration is a recognition on the part of both organizations of the importance of financial education, especially for those with little banking experience. This was the impetus for the creation of the FDIC Money Smart financial education curriculum, which will serve as a platform for the effort. Operation HOPE has been using the Money Smart curriculum since 2001.
The FDIC says it is committed to "the fair inclusion of Minority- and Women-Owned Businesses (MWOBs) to compete and participate in the FDIC's contracting activities, asset purchasing and investing opportunities." One of the main purposes of the agreement is to enable MWOBs to better participate in the FDIC goods-and-services acquisition process, as contractors or subcontractors.
Money Smart, the educational platform on which the new initiative will rest, was created by the FDIC in 2001. Operation HOPE was an early adopter in that year. The purpose of the curriculum is to help those with little or no banking experience "enhance their financial skills and create positive banking relationships." Money Smart has been adopted by more than 1,400 financial institutions and community-based organizations across the U.S.
In the agreement the FDIC agrees that as long as Operation HOPE remains a member of the Money Smart Alliance it will:
- Recognize Operation HOPE as a member of the FDIC Money Smart Alliance on the FDIC's Money Smart website.
- Make the Money Smart curriculum available to potential Operation HOPE instructors upon demand.
- Provide technical assistance on how to implement and integrate Money Smart to promote access to appropriate basic banking services.
- Provide training for the Operation HOPE's staff who will teach the Money Smart curriculum.
- Collaborate with Operation HOPE's one million Black-owned business initiatives (IMBB Coalition).
- Identify types of outreach initiatives to educate minority and/or women owned businesses on how to do business with the FDIC.
- Inform Operation HOPE of both FDIC and third-party events, training opportunities, programs, etc. that would benefit the collaboration.
“We are excited about FDIC’s collaboration with Operation HOPE as we share a common purpose to help every person belong to our nation’s financial system. Working together, it is our goal to make certain our nation’s economy works for everyone.”—FDIC Chairman Jelena McWilliams
Operation HOPE's Role
As part of its role, Operation HOPE agrees to:
- Provide training, speaking, and information-sharing opportunities for the FDIC during Operation HOPE's annual conference and other events.
- Provide opportunities for the FDIC to publish articles in member publications on matters relating to financial education and economic inclusion.
- Provide links from the Operation HOPE website to the FDIC's public website highlighting the Money Smart and Minority and/or Women Owned Business programs.
- Deliver the Money Smart curriculum through workshops, webinars, or other means.
- Provide the Money Smart curriculum to instructors.
- Help evaluate the effectiveness of Money Smart efforts.
- Provide periodic feedback to the FDIC on the scope and impact of its Money Smart-related efforts.
- Encourage Operation HOPE members to provide to the FDIC digital or audio recordings of meetings/ conferences, and attendance rosters related to the agreement.
"FDIC’s bold commitment to financial education and empowerment closely aligns with our work at Operation HOPE. Through initiatives like Money Smart, we are honored to help increase the ability for more Americans to take control of their finances and build a brighter future."—John Hope Bryant, Founder, Chairman and CEO of Operation HOPE
Finally, in an effort to continuously improve the cooperation between the FDIC and Operation HOPE, the agreement stipulates that the FDIC will "continually evaluate the initiative." There will be periodic check-ins between FDIC and Operation HOPE to discuss the effectiveness of the arrangement.
Ultimately, the collaboration between the FDIC and Operation HOPE is designed to promote financial education as a means to allow MWOBs to effectively compete for FDIC contracts, asset purchases, and investments.