PINE BLUFF, Ark — The City of Pine Bluff has been working to keep its students from debt and loans in a program that will provide kids as young as 5 years old with savings accounts.
"It's important because it's preparing you to be a doctor, to be a lawyer, to be a plumber," said Mayor Shirley Washington.
Washington will introduce "The Pine Bluff Promise" to students across the city.
The program will offer kids from kindergarten through the 12th grade a savings account to invest in their future— which they can set up with their parents.
"At the end of that journey they will have money to pay for a college education, and if they couple that with scholarship dollars they won't have anything to worry about," said Washington.
The savings accounts will be provided through the company, Sootchy Inc.
David Adefeso, the CEO and founder of Sootchy Inc., said that parents and kids will also learn financial literacy and how to invest effectively.
"If a kid has a college fund they are three times more likely to go to college and four times more likely to graduate," Adefeso added.
The city will soon begin the sign-up process with events where people can learn more.
Other cities in Arkansas including El Dorado, Arkadelphia, and Little Rock have similar programs.