Thursday June 2, 2016 

Finance

The Future in Focus

$1200 BC Training and Education Savings Grants available

Tashon Ziara, Prospera CU

 

n International Children's Day, June 1, Prospera Credit Union encouraged parents to take advantage of a key program that can help the financial and educational well-being of their young children: the BC Training and Education Savings Grant (BCTESG).

The $1,200 government grant was launched last August and Prospera Credit Union was one of the first financial institutions to provide access to the grants. Since September, the families of more than 3,200 children have started BCTESG accounts at BC credit unions to take advantage of the program, putting $3.8 million into education accounts for their children.

This year 80,000 children across the province are, or will become, eligible to receive the $1,200 grant from the province. It is a one-time provincial incentive available to children when they turn six years old and must be used for post-secondary education or training. The grant is available to children born after 2006, once they turn six years old. You may apply any time before their ninth birthday.

“Investing in our children’s education is one of the best ways we can ensure a bright financial future and this grant provides a great head start to save for your child’s education,” said Prospera’s President and CEO, Shawn Good. “We encourage families to take advantage of this worthwhile government program and we’re pleased that Prospera is able to make the application available to families in our communities.”

Since this is a new program, if a child had their sixth birthday in 2013, 2014 or 2015, families can get an extension until August 14, 2018, or the day before their ninth birthday, whichever is later, to get the grant.

Parents can apply for the grant at any of Prospera’s 16 branches. Parents don’t need to contribute to a Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) to receive this grant, but they do need to open an RESP before the child turns nine.

In order to enroll, both the child and a parent (or guardian) must be residents of BC and have valid social insurance numbers.

If approved, the $1,200 grant will be deposited directly into an RESP once the application has been processed by the Employment and Social Development Canada. The money will arrive within about six to eight weeks after the application is made.

Once the child is enrolled in full-time or part-time studies at a qualifying post-secondary educational program, the BC Training and Education Savings Grant can be withdrawn from the RESP.

More information is available at any Prospera branch, or by visiting www.canlearn.ca

About Prospera Credit Union

Building on more than 70 years of history in British Columbia, Prospera Credit Union is proud to be a member owned co-operative serving communities from Vancouver to Kelowna. As a full service financial institution that prides itself on building relationships, we serve our members through sixteen branches; online and mobile banking; and a locally-based contact centre. Through The Exchange® network, our members enjoy access to more than 3,300 surcharge free ATMs across Canada (that’s right, no ATM fees).

Making life better for everyone is important at Prospera and the credit union backs that up with an extensive community investment program devoted to supporting the organizations, events and volunteers that make our communities stronger. To learn more, check out Prospera’s YouTube channel and Facebook page or visit the credit union’s newsroom online at prospera.ca.

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