This Sunday 24 January is the International Day of Education and to mark the occasion I have an inspiring local story for you about how one financial literacy education initiative has adapted to meet the needs of vulnerable communities during the pandemic.
Coronation Fund Managers, in partnership with community education specialists Avocado Vision, are providing consumer financial education to communities all around the country, free of charge, through 14 programmes in all nine provinces. Some are in rural settings, others are in urban or peri-urban areas, but all serve communities who need assistance.
What’s really made a difference during the pandemic is that these programmes were adapted to include community-based Covid-19 awareness and education, financial education workshops at grassroots level that adhered to strict Covid-19 safety protocols (e.g. these are conducted outdoors, with 2m separations, masks and other safety measures), as well as innovative financial literacy training for the most vulnerable community members via the WhatsApp platform. This new user-friendly and cost-efficient remote learning approach has proven to work well for those community members who face many diverse challenges such as co-morbidities, low network capacity, limited access to technology, expensive data, budgetary constraints, and other practical challenges.
Training is facilitated at grassroots level by upskilled peer trainers within local communities and covers topics such as budgeting, debt, credit, risk management, basic financial products and services to be aware of, as well as financial survival tactics and other key personal finance concepts. Their “Surviving unexpected events financially” course has been particularly helpful to those individuals facing financial hardship during the pandemic.
By raising awareness of these programmes, we call on anyone who may be interested in this free training to enquire on Avocado Vision’s Facebook page.