The Fin in Finance

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Kim Large, a Senior Licensed Personal Banker from WesBanco in Chillicothe, became a familiar face this fall at The Pioneer Center. Ms. Large has been stopping by on Wednesday afternoons to teach a finance class to a group of 10 adults who are served by Pioneer. The 7-class series serves to assist adults with developmental disabilities by helping them better maintain their finances and thereby obtain greater independence. This week marked the last of the series, with all of the participants graduating and receiving a certificate of completion.

The classes cover important financial basics such as balancing check books, depositing money, writing checks, and understanding bank statements. Participants also learn how to keep credit in good standing, avoiding fraud, and practicing good financial decision making.

Ms. Large conducts classes for many different groups across central-Ohio to teach people about personal finance and savings. Participants’ ages range from 5 to 50, and the financial topics covered reach across a similarly broad base.

One agenda item covered for this specific group was a discussion of representative payees. A representative payee is a person or an organization appointed to receive Social Security or SSI benefits for anyone who can’t manage or direct the management of his or her benefits. The main benefit of not having a representative payee, aside from the financial one ($39 or less per month), is gaining financial independence.

Kim explained that she typically starts out her classes with fact-finding, or “getting a feel for your crowd, to see what level they’re at” as she puts it.

“Some are very advanced, while others struggle with the concept of a statement,” said Kim. It’s not all button-down business though, as I learned when I stopped in to the second class. “They’re fun,” she said. “Especially when you see that the lightbulb goes off. The students are always smiling and interactive. It’s a positive environment. They’re just good people.”

If you are interested in Ms. Large visiting a group you’re affiliated with, you can contact her at 740-422-7443. For more information on the Pioneer Finance Program, please contact Patrick McFadden at 740-773-8044.

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