Meet Wacinque BeMende. He’s so passionate about encouraging savings and promoting financial literacy, he’s established his own Kid’s Savings Program. Wacinque donated $15,000 to the Community Action of Laramie County in Cheyenne Wyoming to begin the Wacinque “ Rhino” Fund Endowment to help kids open savings accounts.

This financially self-educated and investment savvy Staff Sergeant in the Army National Guard started saving when he was 12. Wacinque grew up in a poor family and that is why he is focusing on helping children of low-income families to start saving and become financially literate. He says what separated his thinking from everyone else’s is that as a kid he believed he could save his way out of poverty so he took action.

Wacinque advocates getting back to the financial basics with savings accounts for kids. With their own savings accounts, kids can see first-hand what interest does and hopefully break the cycle of poverty.

Wacinque is challenging other military members to open accounts for kids or create matching programs to help stimulate action.

Wacinque says, “You don’t need to save as much if you spend less and save consistently because even a little bit eventually adds up.”

This Army guardsman is preparing to deploy and is actually looking forward to it. He’s a big fan of the Savings Deposit Program (SDP) and thinks there is no better savings product because you cannot beat the 10% annual return. He says, “Put all the money you save by not having to pay taxes on your federal income while you are in a combat zone into the SDP and you won’t miss a dime. When you take the money out, when you return, you’ll have to pay taxes on what you earn but the bonus is that you EARN, you don’t spend!"

Wacinque is also a big fan of Military Saves because Military Saves is also about breaking the cycle and changing savings behavior. To him, it’s all about making a difference and touching one person at a time.


We want to brag about you! If you have a story to tell about your organization's Military Saves activities, please contact us.

Tell us about:

  • How you got the campaign going in your unit or other organization
  • What you've done to involve children and other family members
  • How much money your members have saved since getting involved in Military Saves
  • Particular individuals and families whose lives have improved because of saving money, or
  • Whatever you're especially proud of and want the rest of the military community to know about!

Tip of the Day

  • You can have an emergency fund! Here are 5 simple ways to start & maintain an emergency fund http://ow.ly/rIhlG 

Pledge to Save

I pledge to save money, reduce debt, and build wealth over time. I will encourage my family and friends to do the same

Pledge to Save

Saver Stories View all »

One Sailor's Course to Financial Freedom

We all know its not easy to get out of debt once you in over your head. But it can be done with the sound advice and support that the Military Saves program offers. I am a testament to that. I was a recently divorced, single mother. Like many people I had credit card debt, a car loan, bad credit, and a low income job that never seemed to be enough to put food on the table.

Read more...

60 Teens participate in Massachusetts Youth Saves Program

During the months of June & July, 60 teenagers aged 13-19 from Marine, Coast Guard, Army, and Air Force families attended Youth Saves programs across the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to help increase their knowledge of financial literacy. Jonathan Harrington, Personal Financial Counselor for the MA Guard & Reserve, created the Youth Saves program to fit into the Military Youth Saves (www.militarysaves.org) theme which encourages kids and teens to develop good savings habits at a young age.

Read more...

Regular Savings is the Key to Success

My name is Chris Strong. I joined the Air Force on 25 March, 1985. On that day, my financial life changed forever. I was introduced to saving bonds in Basic Training. Savings bonds were the big thing back then just like the Thrift Savings Plan is today. A Colonel gave us a briefing. I cannot remember his name but I can remember the 100 savings bonds he had posted to a piece of card board. He gave us a speech on the importance of saving money and how it can change your life. He inspired me to save.

Read more...