Shared His SEED Saving Experience on Capitol Hill
Jamar Nembhard, a then-16-year-old from Wilmington, DE, already had plans for pursuing a college degree in computer science, his own business, and giving back to his community – all thanks to his SEED account and financial education classes.
In less than four years, Jamar saved $2,900 through his savings account with the Boys and Girls Club of Delaware’s SEED program. Jamar’s involvement in SEED even had a positive influence on his single mother, Sonia Johnson; once Jamar began to save in his SEED account, Sonia opened her own Individual Development Account and opted to pursue a degree in the healthcare field. Jamar said that SEED provided him with “a great opportunity to learn the value of money” and to receive matched savings as well. Through the financial education classes, Jamar learned “the importance of budgeting, and the value of saving, spending and sharing,” – he and his classmates even learned about the stock market. Through the SEED program, Jamar learned some key strategies for saving – for example, he started giving himself a twenty-four hour “cooling off period” before deciding to make a purchase.
Through the “tools of time and money,” Jamar was looking forward to starting his own technology business someday. He hoped to donate computers to organizations like the Boys and Girls Club in order to help disadvantaged kids in the community.
An eloquent speaker, Jamar was invited to speak about his experience on Capitol Hill in October 2007 – he joined Senate and House champions to discuss the ASPIRE Act, which would create a savings account for all children at birth. After telling his story about participating in SEED, Jamar said: “I now recognize that no matter how little the amount of money that I begin with, if I allow time to work for me, I can accomplish a better way of life.” At the end of Jamar’s speech, New York Times columnist David Brooks commented that “Congressmen and other speakers could learn a thing or two from Jamar on how to conduct themselves physically, write a speech, and deliver it.”