BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - On Thursday, more than two dozen children took part in a new financial program hosted by Biloxi Excel By 5. The catch — many of the children were still in diapers.
Biloxi's Excel by 5 teamed-up with Community Bank to host the first "I Am a Super Saver" program at Lopez School. Parents say the free course is a wise investment.
"You never are too young to learn how valuable five cents is. We're just so excited about this. This is one of the special activities that we do," said Susan Hunt with Biloxi Excel by 5.
Mississippi First Lady Deborah Bryant opened up the financial lesson by reading to a roomful of tots. The book tells the story of a little girl who saved enough money to buy a teddy bear named "Corduroy".
Two-year-old Zaryana Yorek was so captivated by the guest reader, she sauntered up to Mrs. Bryant and sat on her lap.
"She's not shy, as you can see," said Zaryana's dad, Jim Yorek of Biloxi. "I think it's a great program. I love when Biloxi does things for kids, and especially for kids at this age."
To get the little ones thinking about saving money, each child got to decorate a ceramic piggy bank, and they each received a personal copy of the book "Corduroy", signed by Mrs. Bryant.
"I think this is awesome what they do. I've heard Susan [Hunt] talk about this program and about everything that they do with the kids and they interact with the parents and they work with the parents to teach them skills to teach their children," said Bryant.
The hope is as the tiny tots grow, so will their money.
"Today, there's too many people out there that spend money and don't save it and it's more important to teach them early so they're better equipped later in life," said Yorek.
The Biloxi School District and five businesses pitched in to support the Super Saver program.