As a way to encourage Kentuckians to improve their personal savings rates and take control of their financial situation, the University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service launched the Kentucky Saves website.

Kentucky Saves began as a week in February that focused on helping people learn how to save money and build personal wealth.

Through this website, Kentuckians can think about saving money and reaching financial goals year round.

Web users enroll as Kentucky Savers and choose an area to focus on saving money. It can include everything from paying off debt to creating an emergency fund. Participants determine how much money they can put toward that fund every month. To help them reach their financial goal, America Saves, of which Kentucky Saves is a part, emails the participants monthly newsletters that include saving tips from national financial experts. Kentucky Savers get free access to a savings tracking tool, a subscription to the quarterly American Saver newsletter and an America Saves Campaign flyer.

“Personal savings rates are nowhere near where they need to be,” said Jennifer Hunter, UK assistant extension professor for financial management. “This site provides guidance, encouragement and advice from financial professionals to help Kentuckians achieve their financial goals.”

The site also includes UK extension publications related to saving money and building personal wealth and more information on the UK College of Agriculture’s Managing in Tough Times Initiative. It can be viewed at

Kentucky Saves Week is Feb. 19-26, 2012.