Over the past few years Military Saves has been exploring what it means to be financially confident. As we’ve talked to both Savers and mission-aligned partners, we’ve been able to define the emerging phrase as this:
Financial confidence is the intersection of building a savings habit, knowing what resources you have available to support your financial stability, and taking advantage of those resources as needed.
You see, financial confidence goes beyond financial literacy, education, and the amount that’s in your bank account.
Financial confidence is inclusive in that it recognizes that Savers have unique circumstances, and those unique circumstances are compounded when you are living a military lifestyle.
Financial confidence goes beyond how much money you have in the bank or at your disposable and includes your commitment to financial stability, knowing what resources are available to you, and taking advantage of those resources to fill in any gaps that may exist.
Military Saves is dedicated to helping servicemembers, their families, veterans, caregivers and the entire military community at-large build financial confidence.
This Military Saves Week we’ll join together and elevate a global conversation that encourages military families to take control of their financial future. No matter where the people you serve are on their financial journey, they’ll clearly see the steps they can take now that will inform and shore up their financial stability.
As always, each day of Military Saves Week will have its own theme that touches on five important areas of financial readiness; however, this year some of those themes have been broadened so that you, our participating organizations, can connect with the concepts in the way that best supports your community and the work you do.
Together, hundreds of organizations and institutions will amplify information, resources, and tools that will ensure we are prepared for the next emergency.
The most simple and effective way to save is to set up automatic savings.
Whether you’re splitting your direct deposit and funneling a portion of your paycheck into savings, or you set up an automatic transfer through your financial institution, by utilizing automated savings you are confidently building a healthy habit of saving.
“Saving is a habit, not a destination.” Automatic savings is one way to easily build that habit. On this day we’ll collectively encourage and share the following messages, strategies, and tips:
Ways to incorporate automatic savings into your money habits
How to overcome mindset blocks and negative self-talk to help you confidently save
No amount is too small when it comes to saving.
Be sure to look at the additional content, messaging, special events, and resources that support the “Saving Automatically” theme inside the #MSW2023 Digital Toolkit.
Having short-term savings is essential to overall financial stability and boosts your financial confidence. What’s short-term savings? Having savings set aside for those unexpected emergencies and opportunities that arise.
Whether it’s needing to have an appliance or car repaired the moment your service member goes on deployment, or that PCS that you weren’t expecting (but should have!) having short-term savings on hand allows you to take care of those unexpected expenses without dipping into funds you need for the present (like bills) and the future (like retirement).
On this day we’ll elevate the following messages:
The importance of building a short-term savings account for emergencies and opportunities
If you’re just starting out with a short-term savings account, set a realistic goal for yourself to build a savings habit like $500.
Saving is cyclical. While you’re building savings, you will have to spend it. You can release any shame around dipping into your savings account when you’ve set up automatic savings.
Additional content, messaging, special events, and resources to support the “Saving for the Unexpected” theme will be available inside the #MSW2023 Digital Toolkit.
How do you save for so many things at once? One of the most overwhelming parts of saving for everyday Americans is balancing saving for so many competing priorities. Add in the military lifestyle, moving often, and fluctuating income and the idea of saving for so many things can seem daunting.
Not only do you need to save for short-term emergencies and opportunities, but also future and long-term goals. Those long-term goals include major milestones like homeownership and retirement.
On this day we’ll share strategies and resources that will allow you to plan for those major life milestones in addition to emergencies and present needs, helping you to feel more financially confident.
Determining which milestones you’re saving for
How to get a clear view of your finances so that you can include saving for major life milestones
Why your future self will thank you for saving for something that feels so far away
Additional content, messaging, special events, and resources to support the “Saving for Major Life Milestones” theme is available inside the #MSW2023 Digital Toolkit.
When you make the decision to pay down or pay off your debt you are saving! Some of the benefits of reducing your debt include saving on interest, late fees, and maintaining or increasing your credit score. As you pay off your debt, you free up cash flow, allowing you to steward those funds toward saving for something else that’s meaningful. Paying down your debt and being able to save for what’s important to you contributes greatly toward your financial confidence and stability.
On this day we’ll elevate the following messages:
The ways in which paying down your debt is saving
The different options and strategies for paying down your debt
Resources and benefits available to servicemembers to pay down their debt
How to cultivate a positive relationship with credit
Additional content, messaging, special events, and resources to support the “Paying Down Debt is Saving” theme is available inside the #MSW2023 Digital Toolkit.
Saving is a lifelong skill and habit. You’re never too young to start learning and implementing positive savings behaviors. You’re also never too old to make positive changes, break cycles, and chart a different path when it comes to your finances.
Because there are a lot of emotions tied to finances, creating a positive mindset and relationship with money builds our financial confidence.
On this day we want to encourage Savers to take control of their finances no matter where they are in their journey, along with ways they can ensure the young people in their lives have a good foundation of financial education.
We’ll elevate the following messages:
The tangible and intangible ways to introduce a savings mindset to children and young adults
How to release any negative emotions and stories you may be telling yourself about your relationship with money
How to jumpstart your new savings journey if you are ready to take control of your finances
Additional content, messaging, special events, and resources to support the “Saving at Any Age” theme is available inside the #MSW2023 Digital Toolkit.
Employers often have Reservists, National Guard, military spouses, and veterans on staff and in your community. If your work reaches a military member - then Military Saves Week is for you!
Family Readiness Centers
Help service members, DoD employees & their families. Participate in the Military Saves Campaign year-round and partner with organizations and units on the entire installation during Military Saves Week each year in April.
Military Leaders and Project Officers (POCs)
Make your unit a savings community. Through a simple annual process modeled after CFC, you can invite your personnel to increase their personal financial readiness.
Military Banks & Credit Unions
Support our military by developing better and safer savings products for use by military members and their families during Military Saves Week and throughout the calendar year. Customizable graphics and personal consultation help your operations and marketing staff personalize your participation in this worldwide campaign.
Nonprofit Organizations & Associations
Embrace the campaign and help it grow! Offer your resources to expand the movement to increase the nation's savings rate. New partnerships contributing financial, executive, marketing, and technical support are invited.