Regions believes that financial education leads to empowerment

Establishing good money habits is key to improving financial wellness

While the virtual world existed long before the pandemic, it has moved to the front of the line. What hasn’t changed is Region Bank’s mission and their vision of what living life and banking relationships can look like.

“We have a really clear mission and that is to make life better. That’s not only for our customers, but also the communities that we serve because that helps enrich everyone,” said Financial Wellness Relationship Manager Karen Pryor.

While it has “morphed” over the years, Regions Bank now offers their Next Step program virtually. Prior to covid the workshops were delivered in person. Financial tools and resources are offered - such as credit, savings, budgeting, increasing your knowledge - to their clients, and is open to businesses and members in their communities free of charge.

“It in a way it started with our mission as we realized that people in our communities were facing various hardships ... that there was a real need for these inter-communities and that was in a way the impetus behind putting this program together,” she said.

Regions’ offerings extend beyond traditional banking, addressing different levels or needs whether it is for a business, an individual or a family. People can choose what they want to learn, the way they wish to learn and interact through different formats such as webinars, podcasts, prerecorded interactive videos, workshops, etc.

A survey was conducted toward the end of 2020 with the prospect of spurring people to begin thinking about their financial resolutions for 2021. The results showed that almost 1 in 3 of the respondents wanted to focus more on more self-care or saving more than usual, said Pryor.

The way to do this is to pay yourself first, Pryor stated. As one gets paid, she said to make sure you set a certain amount aside with every paycheck. Consistency and letting it build is key. After that, you look at the money you have remaining to spend on your bills (basic necessities).

“Another interesting thing we saw was about 28-30 percent was going to focus on no more FOMO (fear of missing out). The need to keep up with the Jones’ or all my friends are doing this so, therefore, I need to spend this money on this or that,” she said.

“Any time is the right time to start thinking about getting your financial house in order. As you are thinking about your goals and habits, your physical well-being and one of the most popular New Year’s resolutions is to get healthy, so your financial health goes right along with it.”


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