The C.A.R.E. Program of the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of South Carolina is a financial literacy education program for students and young adults taught by bankruptcy judges, bankruptcy trustees, and bankruptcy lawyers in order to provide a counter-message to the financial illiteracy of young people in America.  The goal of the program is to improve the financial literacy of students and other young consumers, who are often influenced by popular culture and even the spending habits of their own parents to spend freely without regard for the consequences.

Television, movies, web sites, social media, and often, the spending habits of their parents bombard students and other consumers with messages to spend freely and to run up consumer debt without truly considering the consequences. The C.A.R.E. Program provides practical and real life lessons on (1) the true cost of consumer credit; (2) how difficult it is to repay consumer debt incurred to buy and do things that may not be necessary or affordable; (3) the many consequences of financial irresponsibility, including bankruptcy, career limitations, and the difficulties surrounding living with high student loan debt; (4) the need to have savings and to effectively budget; and (5) the advantages of living with manageable consumer debt. Critically, the overuse and misuse of student loans is one of the biggest problems facing young people today, and the CARE Program explains the different types of available student loans and how to choose among them wisely.

The C.A.R.E. Program has been highly successful and well received, in part, because the audiences detect and appreciate the expertise and passion of the bankruptcy practitioners making the presentations. The C.A.R.E. Program is taught by role models from our legal community, who have personal experiences with the consequences of failing to use credit wisely and whose experiences are incorporated into each practitioner’s presentation, thereby inciting energy into our presentations that is absorbed by our audiences.

C.A.R.E. presentations are elegant in their simplicity; using age appropriate interactive media presentations, C.A.R.E. presentations are direct, interactive, concrete, hip, engaging, and relevant. In our experience, C.A.R.E. Program presentations generally last from thirty to ninety minutes, and we usually have two or three speakers at each presentation. Because of the nature of our materials and the subject matter, we can be very flexible and can incorporate topics you would like us to discuss and emphasize into our presentations. We are happy to develop each presentation with your input and present within a timeframe that will work for you.

We are offering to give free C.A.R.E. presentations to students at high schools, middle schools, colleges and to other community organizations. Please let us know if you have questions about the C.A.R.E. Program, and if you would be interested in working with us to schedule one of our presentations.


Sponsoring Organizations

Credit Abuse Resistance Education Program

The Honorable John E. Waites, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge for the District of South Carolina, South Carolina Legal Services, and the South Carolina Bankruptcy Law Association are partnering to expand the number of volunteers working in support of the Credit Abuse Resistance Education (CARE) Program which seeks to educate high school and college students on the responsible use of credit, fundamentals of financial literacy, and the potential consequences of poor money management and credit card abuse.  Volunteers are needed as program presenters and to help maintain a library of materials for use with CARE presentations.  Please let us know if you have questions about the CARE Program and if you are interested in lending your support as a program presenter.

United States Bankruptcy Court For The District of South Carolina

Representative The Honorable John E. Waites
The mission of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of South Carolina is to provide debtors with a fresh start and to resolve claims in a fair and efficient forum dedicated to excellent public service. The three federal bankruptcy judges in the District of South Carolina conduct hearings primarily in Columbia, Charleston, and Spartanburg. The Clerk of Court Office is located in Columbia, S.C.

South Carolina Bankruptcy Law Association (SCBLA)

Representative Pamela Simmons-Beasley, Esq
The South Carolina Bankruptcy Law Association (SCBLA) is a non-profit corporation whose primary purpose is to promote bankruptcy legal education for attorneys practicing before the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of South Carolina. The association serves as a liaison between the Bankruptcy Bar, the Bankruptcy Court and the Office of the United States Trustee.

South Carolina Legal Services (SCLS)

Representative Susan Ingles, Esq
South Carolina Legal Services (SCLS) is a statewide law firm that provides civil legal services to protect the rights and represent the interests of low income South Carolinians.  SCLS provides free legal services in a wide variety of civil (non-criminal) legal matters to eligible low income residents of South Carolina.  SCLS is a non-profit corporation governed by a Board of Directors and funded by grants from the federally funded Legal Services Corporation, the S.C. Bar Foundation, local United Way, state court filing fees and other federal, State and local funding. Their vision is that all low income South Carolinians will have full and fair access to justice.