Libraries are always making the big push for literacy. Of course, it’s our mission, we are all about reading, it’s a survival skill and it’s in our best self interest because if people don’t read, we have no reason to exist. However I think libraries should think about delving into a new area of literacy, financial literacy. Isn’t it just as important to understand the implications of your credit card interest rate as it is to be able to read the bill?
The country is in crisis from the collapse of the housing market. Lots of people took on more debt than they could handle or took huge risks thinking they could turn a quick profit. Why? No financial literacy skills. There aren’t many classes in the schools and if your parents didn’t teach you about credit and mortgages and investing, who will? Perhaps this is a new area librarians could explore, teaching finance along with reading. Financial literacy is vital, yet ridiculously neglected, life skill. To that end, I’ve found a great personal finance blog, www.getrichslowly.org.
It’s advice is sane, conservative and sound. no get rich quick schemes or tricky investments. Good place to check out if you are trying to get your financial life in order. There are interesting articles, calculators, reader commentary and book recommendations. Best of all, it’s free.