CARE educates young adults on the responsible use of credit and the potential consequences of credit card abuse.

Founded in 2002 by U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge John C. Ninfo, II, , CARE (Credit Abuse Resistance Education) educates high school and college students on the responsible use of credit, the fundamentals of financial literacy, as well as the potential consequences of poor money management and credit abuse.

The recent financial crisis made it clear that the cost of financial illiteracy is high. Credit card debt, fallout from foreclosures, and student debt levels continue to mount. Many young people do not appreciate the benefit of establishing a good credit history, and lack the knowledge and experience to overcome the temptations of overspending and abusing credit.

CARE provides free 30-90 minute financial literacy programs presented by bankruptcy professionals. The programs help students understand: (1) the true cost of consumer credit; (2) how difficult it is to repay consumer debt incurred to buy and do things that may not be necessary or affordable; (3) the many consequences of financial irresponsibility, including bankruptcy; (4) the need to maintain a savings cushion and to budget effectively; and (5) the advantages of a high credit score.

By providing students access to local bankruptcy judges and lawyers who volunteer their time, the program also provides students with an opportunity to ask questions about bankruptcy and the legal profession. Participating schools have consistently commented on the value of students hearing the CARE program’s important message from attorney role models.

CARE boasts a presence in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. CARE is a financial education outreach program of the American Bankruptcy Institute.

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