Money Smart: Changing Lives for the Better
"I am a student of the first Money Smart Workshop series. I immigrated to U.S. 5 years ago….Learning new knowledge is very important to an immigrant like me.
Ms. Lan Fang Liang talks to reporters and members of the Chinatown community about her experience with the Money Smart program. Her remarks were translated by Ricky Lam (left) of the Chinese American Service League. (Photo: James Kegley)
Up until this point, I have never had basic knowledge about banking, financial management and personal finance. Before I come to the Money Smart workshops, I didn't even know some common vocabulary such as deposit, withdrawal, checks, cash, amount, total, balance and interest. I did not know how to write a check, deposit slip, or withdrawal slip by myself. I always had to ask the banks' staff to help me fill out all the forms. Although I had a checking account, I never used it because I didn't know how to write a check.
I truly learned a lot from attending the Money Smart workshops; the word SMART is essential. Although I only have a beginner's knowledge, at least I knew the importance of taking care of my personal financial matters smartly. For example, after the workshops, I realized that I could get what I need by using ATM machine, credit card or other forms of financing. When a person needs cash urgently at midnight, and if all the financing institutions are closed, this person can get cash from a 24-hour ATM machine to solve his or her problem.
After I attended the Money Smart workshops, I recognized that personal and family financial management are connected to our daily living. These workshops are a way to increase our knowledge, adapt to the U.S. and give back to the community.
I plan to improve my English in order to understand more about financial knowledge and grasp the techniques to manage our money smartly. It not only benefits my family and myself but also contributes to the community.
I would like to say thank you to those government departments, community organizations and financial institutions who provide such a wonderful opportunity for me to learn and allow me to speak today. Thank you very much!"
---Ms. Lan Fang Liang, speaking at the Chicago rollout of Chinese Money Smart. Translated by Ricky Lam, Chinese American Service League.