When I retired from a 30-year career in the U.S. Air Force, I wanted to find a way to continue supporting the wonderful men and member of the uniformed services. I found that path with First Command Educational Foundation (FCEF).
With a mission of educating those who serve, FCEF is dedicated to proving scholarships and financial education to all military servicemembers and their families. Everything FCEF does is focused on improving these services, helping more people every year than the year before, and stretching every donated dollar as far as possible.
As an employee and board member, I’ve had the privilege of personally awarding scholarships and conducting many educational classes. The joy and pride I’ve seen on the faces of scholarship recipients and that “light bulb” moment with individuals who finally grasp a financial principle are simply priceless.
After 10 years of working for FCEF, sadly, I am longer amazed at how little most people understand about this critical life skill. No matter what a person’s career path is or how much money they make, if they don’t know how to manage their finances, their financial wellness is in serious jeopardy.
Here are just a few of the many FCEF success stories that people have shared with me over the last ten years.
- One person traded their very expensive car on a nice dependable one and finally had money to save and invest.
- Another professional told me that after taking our classes he was scared for his family’s future because he “thought” he had been doing what he needed to do to take care of them financially. He had to make changes.
- A young lady who just started in her first real job was so proud when an emergency happened and she actually had money in an emergency savings account to cover the expenses -- something she didn’t realize she needed until attending an FCEF class.
- Another person simply followed the guidance we posted on our website about building good credit and was able to finally buy a home after being denied a loan on many occasions.
These individuals (and countless more) got the help they needed from FCEF ; it’s an organization that truly wants only to help. All their services are provided at no cost to the recipients and there are never any sales associated with any of their services. There is simply no hidden agenda and FCEF is truly who they say they are. All anyone has to do to get their help is to ask for it. What are you waiting for?
I retired from the Army about a year ago. I wasn't sure what I wanted to do, but I knew I wanted a job that would help support our military service members and their families. First Command Educational Foundation was created to help service members know and understand financial literacy. We do presentations on or off military installations that cover everything from understanding the Thrift Savings Plan, to planning for retirement. Our CEO Vickie Coleman (Command Chief Master Sergeant Retired) is truly dedicated to continuing to take care of our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coast Guard through financial literacy. She does this at no charge to the Services or its members. I have been truly blessed to find a job that allows me to continue my service to our countries most prized possession, our Service members!
This foundation really helps folks get in touch with their financial behaviors, helping to have the knowledge to sort out needs from wants in an instant gratification world. Great mission!
These folks do an outstanding job of providing financial literacy not only to military organizations, but schools and individuals across our nation. Check out their content. I particularly like the new Savy Saver App they just put out. Very helpful tool for parents with their children.