Junior Achievement marks milestone
LOUISVILLE, KY (WDRB) -- Teaching kids how to run a business and staying out of financial trouble.
Those are among the goals of Junior Achievement of Kentuckiana.
The non-profit organization is celebrating ten years at its current location.
It was back in 2004 when JA turned an old warehouse in the 1400 block of West Muhammad Ali Boulevard into a learning center and its headquarters.
On Thursday, fifth graders from Morgan Elementary in Harrison County, Indiana became citizens of BizTown. It is a miniature city at JA that teaches kids about what it takes to operate a business.
"This gives JA the chance to give kids hands on opportunities to apply what they have learned in the classroom," says Debra Hoffer, the president of JA of Kentuckiana.
"They learn about financial literacy, they learn about work readiness, the skills they need to have a job, how to manage their money and about entrepreneurship, they get to come here and try it out," says Hoffer.
On Thursday Morgan Elementary student Gabe Waters was running the town's restaurant.
"I am the food manager, I deliver popcorn," Gabe told WDRB News.
Baylee Donnahoe was the manager of the TV station.
"I am helping my friends work with TV technology and we are recording different things like ads," says Donnahoe.
And Megan Bowman was running the whole town.
Says Megan, "I like being mayor a lot, I get to give speeches in front of everyone and I like that."
Junior Achievement of Kentuckiana serves about 56,000 students across the region.
"We've doubled the number of students we've served in the past seven or eight years," says Hoffer, "but we need to double that again."
As a non-profit JA depends on the generosity of the business community.
Kroger with a $25,000 donation is the latest business to cut the ribbon on a storefront here.
JA says individuals can help too.
"We have more than 3,000 volunteers and they serve as mentors, but we need more volunteers," says Hoffer.
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