While the subjects taught ubiquitously in U.S. high schools are typically math, science, history, and English, many have pointed out that one crucial category is missing that young people really need to consider as they move toward adulthood: finances. .
Many children grow up learning about finances by watching their parents handle money or in a vacuum where no conversation about the subject ever comes up.
This is especially typical in low-income households, where families are often too focused on day-to-day survival to consider how to prepare their children for their own financial futures.
However, one musician wants to use his fame as a platform to give those kids the financial intelligence they need to better navigate the world as adults.
Her grandmother helped start the Icy Baby Foundation
Grammy-nominated rapper Saweetie wants to help people better understand financial literacy at an early age, so she’s launching a new financial literacy course for kids ages 7-17.
Those who take the course will receive a funded debit card, as well as teaching resources on everything from savings and budgeting to general financial planning.
“I want to continue to use my foundation and resources to financially empower young children and students, especially in black and brown communities,” Saweetie said of the initiative.
“The long-term goal of the Icy Baby Foundation is to increase financial literacy among children and propel them towards brighter futures,” he added.
Saweetie launched the non-profit Icy Baby Foundation in 2021 with the help of her grandmother, Roxanne Glass. Their first goal is to make financial literacy resources available to children to give them the basics needed to manage money well.
“The reason I’m so sensitive about it is because I need help to my damn self,” she said in a May 2022 interview with Glamor . “It’s not enough to just put money in the savings account, especially to create generational wealth for you, your family or your children. It’s important that we educate these young children so that it’s something that instills in their minds, so it’s not something they’re trying to figure out as adults.”
Saweetie has also guest lectured at his alma mater, the University of Southern California, for business feasibility and business start-up courses.
The racial wealth gap is getting worse
The average black or Latino family earns about half as much as the average white family and owns only 15 to 20 percent of the net wealth, according to the Federal Reserve.
This is an example of the racial wealth gap, and a closer look shows even more troubling numbers. White households held 86.8 percent of the nation’s overall wealth according to the 2019 Survey of Consumer Finances, and the gap continues to grow.
Those engaged in conversations about the racial wealth gap have often pointed out that black financial education lags behind whites: Only 3.9% of low-income students are required to take a personal finance class to graduate from high school .
However, Saweetie’s popularity among Gen Z fans could help change that. With 12.9 million followers on Instagram, she already has a massive audience that loves what she does, making her the perfect advocate for information that could significantly help young people of color.