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Contact: Tami De La Fuente/Marianita K. Paddock
1-800-392-4340, ext. 1277 or ext. 1207
713-778-4604 or 713-707-7190 (pagers)

Girl Scouts to Learn Financial Literacy
NASDAQ and Girl Scouts of the USA Grant To Teach Basic Money Management Skills

(FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - Houston, June 23, 2003) By the time a group of Houston Girl Scouts completes a financial education program, they will have a good taste of the importance of investing, budgeting and saving for a secure financial future, and may even become financially savvy. Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council (GSSJC) is one of twenty Girl Scout Councils around the country to receive a $5,000 grant from Girl Scouts of the USA, funded by the NASDAQ Stock Market Education Foundation, to increase the financial literacy of girls and to teach sound investing and management skills. The grant will fund a yearlong after-school program, Girls Understanding Long-term Financial Success (GULF), to be held at two Houston Independent School District campuses that have Communities In Schools on site. Girls from one high school and one elementary school will learn how to invest, what interest is, and how it accumulates, how to open a bank account, write checks, and balance a checkbook. The Women’s Resource Center of Greater Houston Age will provide an age-appropriate curriculum that would help the girls build financial savvy.

The goal of the GULF Program is to inform and teach girls in at-risk environments the importance of investing, saving, budgeting and planning their spending habits for financial health, wealth and growth. The lessons learned in the classroom setting will be reinforced by community visits to financial institutions, like banks and stock brokerage firms, where each girl will get a behind the scenes look at how the world of finance operates. The GULF program targets girls at risk between the ages of 11-12 and ages 15-17.

"We know the girls will benefit from this program because they will learn vital, and practical money management skills. They will develop the maturity and knowledge that comes from learning that spending wisely, and saving regularly builds wealth and financial wellness for the long haul, whether they intend to become corporate executives or rap stars," says San Jacinto CEO Mary Vitek. "These are the lessons many kids in college wish they had learned before leaving home," she adds.

Girls in the teen age group will also spend some time mentoring girls at the elementary school age, sharing their personal experiences about balancing jobs and school, and talking about the goals they have set for saving and spending.

At the end of the year, the program will culminate when all the participating girls form teams of three to five, and compete in the Stock Market Game, a ten-week online challenge facilitated by The NASDAQ Education Foundation.

Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council is the premiere organization for all girls - building character, values and skills for a lifetime. As the largest Girl Scout Council in Texas, San Jacinto serves more than 55,000 girls and 14,000 adults in 21 east and southeast Texas counties. For information about joining Girl Scouts, call 1-800-392-4340 and ask for Membership. To find out about volunteer opportunities, please visit us online at

GSSJS Pluralism Statement
Embracing and promoting pluralism is an integral part of every activity and plan of Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council, not disconnected or separate projects. Only individuals willing to accept and be educated about the basic tenet that Girl Scouting is for all girls may serve in volunteer leadership or staff positions.

Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council l Brand Management & Fund Development Department
3110 Southwest Freeway l Houston, TX 77098