LAKE SUCCESS, N.Y., April 27, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- In celebration of national Teach Children to Save (TCTS) month in April, Astoria Federal Savings has launched its sixth annual essay contest for children ages 5-12 asking them to complete the statement: "If I save a lot today, in the future I could..." Astoria Federal invites children from throughout Brooklyn, Queens, Nassau, Suffolk and Westchester to enter and share their dreams for the future. Entry forms are available at any Astoria Federal branch and online at www.astoriafederal.com.
In June, an essay contest winner will be selected from each branch, and those winners will go on to compete for the Grand Prize, as well as 1st and 2nd Prizes in the following age groups: 5-7, 8-10 and 11-12. The Grand Prize winner and their school will each receive a new laptop computer, while 1st Prize winners will receive $500 U.S. Savings Bonds, and 2nd Prize winners will receive $250 U.S. Savings Bonds. In addition, every child selected as a local winner from their community will receive a $50 U.S. Savings Bond, a Teach Children to Save Celebration Award Certificate, an Education First medal and have their photo taken for community recognition.
The TCTS effort continues as branch managers from throughout Astoria Federal's network participate in Astoria Federal's School Outreach program. Conducted in cooperation with the American Bankers Association (ABA) Education Foundation, the program enables local bankers to visit schools and after-school programs to deliver two age-appropriate and interactive lessons on saving money. Both provide practical instruction to help children make sound financial decisions.
Since introducing the school outreach program, Astoria Federal has received positive feedback from the teachers whose classes participated. In 2010, nearly 2,000 children participated in the program.
"We have had an even greater impact this year by expanding our curriculum and strengthening partnerships with local schools," said Astoria Federal Savings Senior Vice President and Director of Marketing Brian Edwards. "Our Teach Children to Save program enables us to nurture good saving and spending habits in young people, skills that will stay with them throughout their adult lives."
In addition to the Essay Contest and School Outreach program, Astoria Federal Savings offered a week-long Teach Children to Save celebration in its neighborhood branches from April 10 - 16, providing children and teens with special offers for Student Savers accounts, raffles and giveaways, as well as bank tours for school groups and scouting troops.
The Teach Children to Save Celebration, Essay Contest and School Outreach program, are part of Astoria Federal's Education First initiative, which was created to inspire lifelong learning in the communities it serves. Education First also encompasses the Bank at School program -- which is an on-site school banking service for students -- and Student Savers accounts specially tailored to young people. Other Education First programs include Astoria Federal's annual Teen Photo Contest and its Kids Tools for School collection drive to help prepare children for school by providing new school supplies, the Lights, Camera, Save! Video Contest that inspires teens to think about savings, and The First Home Club™ to promote homeownership for adults.
For additional information about Astoria Federal's Teach Children to Save Essay Contest, School Outreach program, or Bank-at-School program, please call 1-800-ASTORIA or visit www.astoriafederal.com.
Astoria Financial Corporation (NYSE: AF), with assets of $17.7 billion, is the holding company for Astoria Federal Savings and Loan Association. Established in 1888, Astoria Federal, with deposits in New York totaling $11.5 billion, is the largest thrift depository in New York and embraces its philosophy of "Putting people first" by providing the customers and local communities it serves with quality financial products and services through 85 convenient banking office locations and multiple delivery channels, including its enhanced website, www.astoriafederal.com. Astoria Federal commands the fourth largest deposit market share in the attractive Long Island market, which includes Brooklyn, Queens, Nassau, and Suffolk counties with a population exceeding that of 38 individual states. Astoria Federal originates mortgage loans through its banking and loan production offices in New York, an extensive broker network covering fourteen states, primarily along the East Coast, and the District of Columbia, and through correspondent relationships covering fifteen states and the District of Columbia.
SOURCE Astoria Financial Corporation