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Families learn at Finance Day event at Boys & Girls Clubs
Clubs soccer league also held playoffs
Marco Salcido, 11, slides down an inflatable water slide Saturday at the Joseph F. Walters Club in Gainesville. The Boys & Girls Clubs of Hall County held a Family Finance Day to help the local community combat financial illiteracy as well as provide activities for the kids.

Families spent time together on Saturday afternoon while also getting to learn information and tips on how to be more financially responsible at Family Finance Day.

The event was sponsored by the Boys & Girls Clubs of Hall County at the Joseph F. Walters Club in Gainesville. Families were invited to attend a free class to learn more about the different financial options available to them.

“We’re having a family finance event that is focused on providing financial literacy,” Unit Director Mark Mendoza said. “Among our community, there is a mistrust in the banking system.”

No reservations were needed, so families could just attend if they were interested. Jack Reilley, a family financial planner from Athens, taught the class and was available to consult with the families afterward.

Mendoza said the class would “... teach parents the importance of saving for the future, the difference between debit and credit systems, the benefits and downsides to refinancing homes, when is the right time to rent versus buy and help parents combat their mistrust of the banking system.”

Besides the financial advice, the clubs promoted their English for Speakers of Other Languages program and Zumba exercise classes for parents. Mendoza said the ESOL classes focus on teaching parents the basics of English. The program is free to parents of children who are club members.

Also, the club has a Zumba instructor that offers free classes twice a week for parents of members. The instructor came out to the event to promote the classes while also teaching families about the importance of healthy lifestyles and staying active.

In addition to the class, the event offered food, inflatables and activities for children.

The event also featured the playoffs for the club’s soccer league. According to Mendoza, there were about 10-14 different teams participating, coming from out of the state.

“This speaks volume about our soccer league that we have parents and players driving as far as from North Carolina to be at our soccer league,” he said.

Esther Balderas of Gainesville came with her child, Andres, who is in first grade. She said the event offered a great opportunity to do something together on a Saturday.

Pedro and Rosa Sepulveda of Gainesville came with their children, Jennifer, Cristyn, Edward and Gladys. Their children told them about the event, so they decided to come to spend time as a family.

The club was packed with families for the soccer playoffs and coming early for the activities. Mendoza expected many more families to show up during the day.

“We’ll end up serving 1,000 people here in the club,” he said.

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