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The four-month pilot programme, conducted by BBVA Compass,  which offered  financial education workshops through partnerships with local nonprofit organisations has culminated with great success. The bank is planning a full launch of the programme next year.

The pilot programme, which began in late August, included 28 nonprofits organisations in 19 markets across the bank’s footprint. The total impact currently exceeds 2,600 participants, with more expected before the programme concludes. Workshops were customised to focus on small business, personal finance and home ownership and led by local bank volunteers with expertise in each of the subject areas.

According to BBVA Compass Director of Corporate Responsibility and Reputation Reymundo Ocañas, the programme underscores the bank’s purpose to bringing the age of opportunity to everyone by improving the lives and financial capabilities of the people in the communities served by the bank.

“We have seen a strong positive response to this pilot which, for us, emphasises the need to expand the depth and breadth of our reach,” Ocañas said. “Our goal for 2019 is to partner with more nonprofit organisations across our footprint to provide the financial education foundation that will help create opportunities for more people to improve their financial capabilities and achieve financial security.”

The BBVA Compass Foundation, the bank’s charitable-giving arm, selected the nonprofits to receive grants and host financial education workshops led by BBVA Compass subject matter experts. These workshops are designed to help participants improve their understanding of the financial system in order to identify and seise opportunities to increase their financial stability. The grant recipients have a demonstrated ability to provide financial capability programming to low- and moderate-income families, to unbanked or underbanked populations, or to small businesses in underserved areas.

BBVA Compass will expand the programme in 2019 to include up to 12 additional markets using similar selection criteria, and will pursue a goal of educating 10,000 low- to moderate-income adults throughout the whole of 2019.

“As experts in the field of financial matters, we believe we have an obligation to share our knowledge with the people in our communities,” said Ocañas. “We want to do whatever we can to help them make sound, responsible financial choices.”