Basic financial literacy should be part of basic education
Educating young South Africans about the fundamentals of using money wisely should be a national priority, according to a senior figure in the financial services industry.
Khanyi Nzukuma, CEO of Metropolitan Retail, says that “low financial literacy is the primary cause of our widespread problems with personal finances and the place to tackle that is in schools and universities”.
He highlights the Youth and Savings Months as a perfect opportunity each year to instill the basics of planning and budgeting: “if those are in place then our appalling rates of indebtedness will fall in the future”.
Nzukuma says the solution lies with the ministries of basic and higher education to teach financial wellness effectively at educational institutions, and with financial services companies to work in parallel within communities; “there’s simply no excuse for the next generation failing to understand how to use money wisely”.
As a part of this process, Metropolitan has expanded the Kickstarz programme designed to teach money management to school learners. Kickstarz, which involves a series of interactive lessons for Grade 11 learners, began last year at the UJ Metropolitan Academy and this year is being rolled out to other schools in KZN, Gauteng and the Western Cape.
Elsie Govender, CSI Manager at Metropolitan, believes Kickstarz has “great potential to make a big difference as a really engaging and fun way to communicate the essentials of money management”.
As a division of MMI Group Ltd, which is a subsidiary of MMI Holdings Ltd, Metropolitan is part of one of South Africa’s largest financial services companies. Metropolitan aims to enhance the lifetime financial well-being of its clients and their communities.
Metropolitan strives to service clients with a suite of innovative, appropriate and affordable financial solutions. Metropolitan’s financial solutions include: savings and investment plans, risk cover, worksite financial wellness programmes and health risk management.
Metropolitan serves customers in more than 12 countries. For more information, visit www.metropolitan.co.za