SAINT PETERSBURG, Fla. — Sheena Qualles De Freece is passionate about finance and empowering young people to be their best.
She combined her two passions when she founded Kidznomics in 2013.
Before that, she had worked at several financial institutions, primarily in debt collection and commercial-asset recovery, for more than two decades.
She left her finance career and got a degree in education. Then, she spent more than 13 years teaching middle-school students reading, history and language arts.
"I talk to students as young as fourth grade and they know the power of money. Now, we just need them to understand the power of budgeting," said Qualles De Freece.
Her passion for helping people become financially literate runs deep. During her years in the financial industry, she saw far too often “people perpetuating their situation” because they didn’t have the understanding or skill to manage their own finances.
With Kidznomics, Qualles De Freece can help break the cycle.
"There's no better time than now. Children have to be taught the new updated skills of handling money," Qualles De Freece said.
She is able to offer free hands-on workshops throughout Tampa Bay with the support of MLK Day of Service and St. Pete's TimeBank. Thanks to them, she's able to bring in props, books and money to teach each financial lesson.
"Kids are smart, they love seeing the money in their hand or reading the lesson in a book. It's so different for them now, I think its kind of lost now with consumerism and all that's going on. You gotta get back to the basics," said Qualles De Freece.
Looking ahead, Qualles-De Freece plans to expand her workshops and finish creating a series of financial literacy eBooks.
To find out more about Kidznomics you can visit their official Facebook page.
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