Jul 13, 2018

NGPF Podcast: Tim Talks to Banksgiving Founder Chris Banks


Chris Banks transformed his struggle into a full-time passion project, and so Banksgiving was founded. His non-profit focuses on providing meaningful and comprehensive financial education to youth in Philadelphia. Listening to Chris in this podcast will make clear how he connects with kids and brings his unique life experiences to hook them. While still in its early years, Banksgiving has already made significant progress in providing young people with financial skills they need to succeed.


  • 0:00–0:50 Introduction
  • 0:51–3:29 The beginning of Banksgiving
  • 3:30–6:37 Chris Banks, the “nerd behind the excel sheet,” learns the tricks of the trade
  • 6:38–12:11 Talking to kids & relating to them on their level
  • 12:12–15:14 Bringing the stock market to life
  • 15:15–17:55 The gift that keeps on giving: saving accounts
  • 17:56–18:28 A word from NGPF
  • 18:29–21:41 Teaching kids how to think instead of what to think
  • 21:42–25:04 Living the entrepreneurship dream through Sweet Charlie’s ice cream
  • 25:05–27:14 What’s next on the drawing board for Banksgiving?
  • 27:15–28:20 Best thing bought for under $10
  • 28:21–28:53 His message to the kids: “without struggle, there is no progress” (Frederick Douglass)
  • 28:54–29:49 Chris’s favorite books
  • 29:50–31:18 Dear Robin Hood, please sponsor Banksgiving!
  • 31:19–32:20 Conclusion

Details on Banksgiving:

  • Banksgiving, based in Pennsylvania
  • Mission: “Our mission is to strengthen and empower the youth of Philadelphia by providing financial literacy focused programming and access to financial resources. By partnering with industry professionals and the greater community, we hope to equip our community with the skills, information, and services needed to live a financially secure life.”
  • Kyle Billig: Sweet Charlie’s ice cream

Favorite books/websites:


  • “You could make $8,000 an hour or you can make $80 per hour, but it could all look the same if you don’t have a budget and if you don’t have a plan about how to spend it… and if you’re just kind of spending as you go.”
  • “What I’ve been successful at is 1) creating topics that they’ll understand, 2) speaking to them in the language they’ll understand, and 3) talking about topics they care about. Even if they don’t care about [those topics], they could say, ‘I understand that.’”
  • “The goal [of Banksgiving]… is to kind of give this right to the underprivileged, to those who may not have understood it and may not what’s going on [in terms of financial education], and being able to give them that insight that others may have had.”


About the Authors

Danielle Bautista

Danielle is a native of Southern California and a recent graduate from the University of Maine, where she braved the frigid winters—a feat in and of itself—and earned her Bachelor's degree in International Affairs. She has a passion for working with non-profit organizations and serving populations in underprivileged communities. When Danielle isn't writing NGPF blog posts, spearheading various outreach projects, or managing contests and flash surveys, you can find her doing some sort of outdoor activity, learning a new hobby, or cracking what she thinks are witty puns!

Tim Ranzetta

Tim's saving habits started at seven when a neighbor with a broken hip gave him a dog walking job. Her recovery, which took almost a year, resulted in Tim getting to know the bank tellers quite well (and accumulating a savings account balance of over $300!). His recent entrepreneurial adventures have included driving a shredding truck, analyzing executive compensation packages for Fortune 500 companies and helping families make better college financing decisions. After volunteering in 2010 to create and teach a personal finance program at Eastside College Prep in East Palo Alto, Tim saw firsthand the impact of an engaging and activity-based curriculum, which inspired him to start a new non-profit, Next Gen Personal Finance.

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