April 17, 2013
Chicago, IL – April 17, 2013 – Chicago Bears' Hall of Fame linebacker Dick Butkus was joined by Visa Inc. today to tackle financial literacy among Chicago teens. Butkus showcased the statewide effort to improve money management skills of Illinois high school and middle school students with Financial Football, a free educational video game and classroom curriculum developed by Visa.
Treasurer Neely kicked the event off with the help of Butkus. The legendary Bear shared his personal experiences on the importance of responsible money management with students. The eight-time Pro Bowl defender then rolled up his sleeves to lead student teams from Theodore Roosevelt High School in a high-energy game of Financial Football.
The popular game is the centerpiece of Visa's nationwide educational initiative with the NFL and NFL PLAYERS. Financial Football helps students and adults tackle their financial futures. The game is accompanied by its own classroom curriculum and has been distributed to every public middle school and high school in the state of Illinois.
"Financial Football is a wonderful playbook that engages students in their own personal finances and is a tool they can use for game planning the rest of their lives. It is never too early for kids to learn about managing their money," said Chicago Bears' Hall of Fame linebacker Dick Butkus. "It's important for parents, teachers and mentors within the community to work together in order to give teenagers a strong understanding of personal finance."
By combining the structure and rules of the NFL with personal finance questions of varying difficulty, Financial Football puts students' fiscal knowledge to the test. The engaging, fast-paced video game is available in English and Spanish and can be played online at www.practicalmoneyskills.com/football, or downloaded as a free Android or iOS app.
"For more than fifteen years, Visa has been committed to promoting financial literacy and we are proud to help strengthen financial education for high school students in Chicago," said Nat Sillin, Head of U.S. financial education, Visa Inc.
Since 2006, Visa has partnered with 37 state governments and the District of Columbia to co-brand and distribute free copies of Financial Football to every public middle and high school in those states (28,470 public schools so far) including: Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia and Wisconsin. The online version of Financial Football has been played more than 650,000 times.
Financial Football is part of Practical Money Skills for Life, Visa's free, award-winning financial education program that launched in 1995. The program contains comprehensive money management resources and lesson plans tailored for use at home and in the classroom. Visa also runs What's My Score (www.whatsmyscore.org), a leading higher education consumer awareness program.
About Visa Inc.
Visa is a global payments technology company that connects consumers, businesses, financial institutions and governments in more than 200 countries and territories to fast, secure and reliable digital currency. Underpinning digital currency is one of the world's most advanced processing networks–VisaNet–that is capable of handling more than 20,000 transaction messages a second, with fraud protection for consumers and guaranteed payment for merchants. Visa is not a bank, and does not issue cards, extend credit or set rates and fees for consumers. Visa's innovations, however, enable its financial institution customers to offer consumers more choices: Pay now with debit, ahead of time with prepaid or later with credit products. For more information, visit http://www.corporate.visa.com.