Do you have debt?  Do you have student loans? Are frequent moves and deployments making it difficult to access services?  Don’t be a victim or an attractive target for scam artists. This July the Federal Trade Commission, the Department of Defense, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Military Saves, and other consumer advocacy and military support organizations are joining for Military Consumer Protection Month in an effort to provide military consumers with free resources about managing their money. Read on to find out how you can keep your finances secure this summer and all year round.

What resources are available?

Marine Corps Installation Personal Financial Managers are the primary source of financial education and counseling on your installation. Don’t have access to the Personal Financial Management Program (PFMP)? The Certified Command Financial Specialist can also advise you on financial education.

The Marine Corps recognizes that financial readiness is an essential component of mission readiness. A solid understanding of personal finances builds confidence in facing financial challenges and responsibilities. That’s why the PFMP provides personal financial education, training, counseling, and financial information and referral at no cost.

Why do I need to worry about my finances?

Besides the obvious (no one wants an empty wallet), financial issues impact security clearance approval, and have been attributed to suicide, stress, and behavioral health issues. Divorce and substance abuse can also be correlated, at least in part, to financial issues. We all have many sources of stress in our lives, but with so many free resources available through the PFMP, your finances don’t need to be one of them.

The Personal Financial Management Program recognizes these financial stressors and offers courses on money management, investment planning, financial planning, retirement and estate planning, and consumer awareness and protection. To learn more and locate a PFMP office near you, click here.