Financial education in the Black community is often a concept that’s not grasped until adulthood. Even then, many young adults struggle to manage their personal finances because they’ve never received a solid foundation in saving and investing.
When former Nickelodeon executive and Goalsetter founder Tanya Van Court set out to create her financial literacy platform, she understood that she had a higher calling to close the wealth gap between Black and brown families in America and educate Black youth all across the country.
The idea for her revolutionary platform came from her then eight-year-old daughter who asked for enough money to start an investment account for her ninth birthday.
Van Court knew that if she could combine her knack for understanding the language of kids as well as her personal connection to financial education, she could create something powerful to better equip Black America’s youth to take charge of their finances.
“I didn’t want to be an entrepreneur. It’s not like I was one of these people who was like, I have to go and sow my entrepreneurial roots,” she tells us. “It was really like I had this mission and, I felt like I was uniquely equipped for it because here I had an eight-year-old who was excited about learning about money and investing.”
“I knew that I was uniquely qualified to not only engage kids from a media, entertainment and multimedia perspective, but I [also] have very deep roots in education,” she adds. “So I thought that well, if not me then who? I really believe that I was prepared for this moment to help our kids and lead them down the path of financial freedom.”
As a Black woman entrepreneur and mother, Van Court was determined to include Black and brown kids in America in the conversation about financial literacy to teach them how to save smart and spend wisely.
According to her, never in American history has a Black woman been at the helm of such a comprehensive financial education platform with such an ambitious goal.
“I think what makes it so disruptive is that never before in the history of America has there been a Black woman-owned tech and financial education company that is targeted at our children,” Van Court shares. “Never before have our children had the opportunity to learn financial education from a Black woman.”
Van Court not only targets kids, but families as well to provide a multi-generational financial education experience. By providing financial tips and tools all families can use, Van Court is rewriting the narrative around financial literacy in Black and brown communities to help them create a path to wealth.
Unlike other financial literacy platforms who prioritize spending over saving, Goalsetter offers so much more. Van Court’s aim is to provide optimal ways for kids and parents to make smart money decisions that encourage them to think about their futures.
“You can’t grow wealth until you grow knowledge,” she says. “So [we’re] making sure that our kids have the knowledge that they need to both learn to spend and invest money responsibly.”
Since launching her platform, Van Court and Goalsetter have raised a $3.9 million seed capital round and recruited big-name investors such as Kevin Durant, Chris Paul, Baron Davis and Sterling K. Brown to all support the platform’s exemplary mission.
According to Van Court, “they are people who fell in love with the platform because they are in love with our community.”
“They are people who are so fully dedicated to our community. So their values were quite frankly rooted in the same values that Goalsetter is rooted in,” she adds. “They wanted us to be able to succeed because they believe in Black entrepreneurship. They were very supportive because it just aligns with who they are, and what they do on a daily basis with their time and talent.”
Over the last year, Goalsetter has become a widely popular platform for Black and brown families, and brands like UBS and Nike took note of its powerful impact.
As part of the brand’s combined $140 million investment in addressing racial inequality in America, Nike donated $1 million to Goalsetter in an effort to support the work that it’s doing.
“We read about Nike’s [$140] million dollar commitment to the Black community, reached out to people at [the brand] and started the conversation there,” Van Court tells us. “They were really committed to finding organizations that they thought had a huge and lasting impact on the next generation, and closing the wealth gap. So for Nike, it was absolutely about those 10,000 kids that they sponsored to get Goalsetter savings accounts, but it was [also] about more than that.”
“The beautiful thing about Nike really turning up the sound on our music is that now that music can be heard throughout the Black community,” she adds. “Every one of our kids and families and anyone who has a kid in their life should be signing them up for Goalsetter because it truly is the path to making sure that we are not taking three steps back as a community, and instead we’re taking 10 steps forward.”
In addition to Goalsetter’s Nike partnership, the platform has also launched on the Apple App Store and even became the tech giant’s app of the day twice.
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“We really appreciate Apple’s commitment to Black founders and entrepreneurs, and elevating our stories and products,” Van Court says. “There are so many times when we, as Black people on technology platforms say, ‘why are our voices being suppressed on these platforms?’ One of the things that I love about Apple is it’s making sure that our voices are uplifted, and that it has been such a tremendous boost to the work that we’re doing.”
Van Court and her game-changing platform are making outstanding progress for Black and brown youth in America, and the brand will only continue to strengthen its impact for years to come.
For more information about Goalsetter, visit its website.