Financial Reality Fairs

What is a Financial Reality Fair?

A Financial Reality Fair is an interactive financial literacy tool for young adults in high school, technical school, Job Corp or college. 

The Financial Reality Fair concept is a unique opportunity for students to experience some of the financial challenges they will face when they start life on their own.  It’s a hands-on experience in which students identify their career choice and starting salaries then complete a budget sheet requiring them to live within their monthly salary while paying for basics such as housing, utilities, transportation, clothing, and food. 

Additional expenditures such as entertainment and travel are factored in as well.

Volunteer for the Financial Reality Fair in Partnership with the PA Dept of Corrections and the PA Dept of Banking

Friday, October 20 – 8:00 am – Noon

Location: PA Career Link, 100 Cameron Street, Harrisburg

CrossState Credit Union Foundation is pleased to announce the continuation of an exciting financial education partnership with the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections (DOC) and the Pennsylvania Department of Banking and Securities.

We need your help! The Foundation is asking area credit unions to participate by volunteering for this unique Financial Reality Fair.  The Financial Reality Fair will be held from 8:00 a.m. to noon in two sessions and we are expecting 75 – 125 participants. To run this effectively, we need 40 volunteers.

The state community corrections centers and supporting organizations assist individuals in their transition back into society, by allowing them to reestablish family connections, continue programming both in the center and in the community, as well as to obtain employment. The DOC has expressed a great need for financial education programming for residents that are working to become self-sufficient. Participants will be referred from three centers in the Harrisburg area.

Sign up to volunteer.

Financial Reality Fair Orientation Video 

Berks County credit union volunteers joined together to produce orientation video for students  who will be participating in a Financial Reality Fair.  

Thank you to Belco FCU, Diamond CU, Discovery FCU, Riverfront FCU, Sun FCU, Utilities Employees FCU,  and Visions FCU for their collaboration on this great video.  Please consider using this to help prepare students for your Fair. 

Financial Reality Fairs for Schools: An Introduction

A Financial Reality Fair provides students with a ‘hands-on’ budgeting experience to gain practical knowledge about personal financial management in a “real world” environment.

The Financial Reality Fair is designed to teach students the value of using money responsibly. This experiential learning exercise has each student choose a career and salary, and then budget their money wisely to make ends meet by role-playing real-life events for one month.

Click here to download the introduction packet.

Find a Fair Kit 

If you are a credit union, see this list of credit union kit keepers to contact for kit information.

If you’re an educator, contact us to find ways to hold a reality fair.

All kits must be reserved in advance, and the borrower is responsible for the pick up, care, neat repacking, and returning of the kit. 

Correlations of Financial Reality Fair to PA SAS and NBEA Standards 

The Financial Reality Fair program has been correlated to the National Business Education Association Standards for Personal Financial Literacy and the Pennsylvania Standards Aligned Systems by Douglas J. Aftanas, Department of Business, Computers & Information Technology, Norwin Highway School, and Amy Lichwa, CEO, Norwin Teachers Federal Credit Union.

Click here to view the Correlations. 

Fair Reporting:  You Can Tell Us About Your Fair & Submit Online! 

Click here for the new Financial Reality Fair Reporting form. 

Fill out the Form