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Talking about money doesn't have to be stressful

piggy bank

URBANA, Ill. – Many households experience stress and anxiety about their personal finances. These intense feelings of uneasiness and discontent can lead to misinformation and negative money behaviors.

University of Illinois Extension is providing a series of six free online workshops to help families learn strategies for talking about money and important financial issues. The workshops are held each Thursday evening beginning May 5. The one-hour sessions start at 6:30 p.m.

Registration is required at If a reasonable accommodation is needed to participate, contact Camaya Wallace Bechard, Extension consumer economics educator, or call 309-663-8306.

"Money conversations can be uncomfortable, and our goal is to help people start or continue those tough but important money discussions with their loved ones," says Wallace Bechard. "With support and practice, those discussions can become easier and more productive."

The individual sessions include:

Who Are You with Money on May 5: The first step to taking control of your money is matching your values and goals to your financial decision-making. In this interactive workshop, assess who you are with money, and where you want to be in the future.

Secrets for Financial Success on May 12: Money comes in; money goes out. Do you have money left for your important goals and wants? Learn the secrets of directing your money to where you want it to go. 

Fair Access to Credit on May 19: Not everyone has the same access to credit. While consumer laws offer protection from discrimination, this problem still affects many consumers. In this workshop, we will explore some of the challenges of obtaining credit as well as unfair lending practices that create barriers to accessing mainstream credit market. 

What’s Your Best Debt Repayment Strategy on May 26: Repaying debt is challenging in the best of situations, and today's economic situation makes it more difficult. Learn tried and true strategies for prioritizing debt repayment and paying it down effectively. Explore options for student loan repayment, too.

Credit Scores Revealed on June 2: Why is credit such a mystery? What's the difference between a credit score, credit report, and credit history? Extension has the answers you’re looking for to understand your credit position.

Make Your Savings Grow on June 9: Do you feel alone in your struggle to save? Financial experts have emphasized the importance of saving for unexpected events and long-term financial goals; however, people at different income levels encounter challenges with saving. This workshop addresses this issue and provides practical ways to help you grow and maintain healthy saving behaviors. 

ABOUT EXTENSION: Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities.

SOURCE: Camaya Wallace Bechard, Illinois Extension Consumer Economics Educator
WRITER: Judy Mae Bingman, Illinois Extension Marketing and Communications Manager