Allianz Malaysia celebrates Global Money Week 2016 with Yayasan Chow Kit
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For the fourth year running, Allianz Malaysia is organising an event for children in conjunction with Global Money Week in March 2016. Global Money Week is celebrated worldwide, with more than 960 organisations in 124 countries across continents participating and connecting with each other in 2016 to raise awareness on financial education among children and youth.
Global Money Week is coordinated and led by Child and Youth Finance International (CYFI), a non-profit organisation based in Amsterdam. It is a worldwide celebration intended to empower the next generation of financial actors to be confident, responsible and skilled economic citizens. The movement has already gathered the support of some of the most prominent leaders and organisations across the world, including the Secretary-General of the UN, Ban-Ki Moon, and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
In support of Global Money Week, Allianz Malaysia organised a My Finance Coach class followed by an interactive activity on the PINTAR Mobile Learning Unit 2 (PMLU2) for Yayasan Chow Kit (YCK) children. YCK is a non-profit organisation that serves as a 24-hour crisis and drop-in centre that provides meals, activities, therapy, case management, and educational programmes for at-risk children of Chow Kit.
The theme for Global Money Week 2016 is ‘Take Part. Save Smart!’. CYFI believes that it is important for children and youth to learn and take part in clever cost-careful habits from an early age, in order to avoid financial exclusion and develop key money-managing skills for later in life.
“At Allianz Malaysia, financial literacy is one of our core corporate responsibility initiatives. Since 2012, we have implemented our own financial literacy programme, My Finance Coach. To date, we have reached out to over 6,900 students in 13 states across Malaysia. Being part of Global Money Week over the last three years enabled us to highlight the importance of financial education among young people through hosting fun events to address a significant issue. Thus, we decided to continue our support for this meaningful event,” said Ng Siew Gek, Head of Allianz4Good of Allianz Malaysia.
My Finance Coach is a non-profit initiative founded in Germany in 2010 by partner companies Allianz, Grey and McKinsey. It is a financial literacy programme aimed at improving the money management skills of young people. Under the My Finance Coach programme, employee volunteers trained as Finance Coaches pair up to conduct classes in schools and non-profit organisations. Classes are interactive and engaging, with students encouraged to come to their own conclusions through role play, product tests and dialogue, among others. By using real life examples, economics and money management is taught in a way that young people can relate to. All Finance Coaches are required to abide to the code of conduct of My Finance Coach which expressly prohibits any form of selling activities. Allianz Malaysia has also partnered with the Federation of Malaysian Consumer Associations (FOMCA) since 2013, enabling My Finance Coach to reach out to more schools through FOMCA’s Hari Pengguna Malaysia competitions.
“The event with Yayasan Chow Kit held on 18 March 2016 aimed to give the children a better understanding on the difference between needs and wants as well as to encourage the habit of saving starting from a young age,” Ng said.
The event was held at Kuala Lumpur Krash Pad (KLKP) for 21 Yayasan Chow Kit children aged 10 to 12 years old. The event started with a My Finance Coach lesson on the topic of ‘Shopping: Basic’. The lesson included differentiating between needs and wants, recognising tools used in advertisements, and learning about the different buying criteria that influence decision-making as consumers. The lesson also highlighted the importance of buying quality products, using motorcycle helmets as an example to explain the potential consequences of poor quality products.
After the class, the children proceeded to the next activity held on the PMLU2. The PMLU2 is a bus converted into a fun learning space, which aims to invoke action and thought among students of schools supported by PINTAR typically in the rural areas. Allianz Malaysia sponsored the Logical Intelligence Activity Station on the PMLU2 focusing on the topic of financial literacy. A mock shopping aisle completed with barcodes and a scanner is set up in the bus where students are given a hands-on opportunity to shop for a specified purpose within a certain budget. The Activity Station encourages students to plan and spend within budget and at the same time to differentiate between needs and wants, using the familiar scenario of grocery shopping.
A second activity incorporated into this activity station is the Savings Planner, which aims to get students thinking about their savings to achieve their targeted goal. Students can choose from the many saving goal options provided, each with a set of pricing for reference, and the amount they can afford to set aside at regular intervals. The planner will then run an analysis to gauge the number of weeks or months it will take for students to reach their goal. The activity is intended to get students to realise that their saving goals are achievable and manageable with proper planning in place.
These activities concluded Allianz Malaysia’s initiative in conjunction with Global Money Week 2016.
“Through our activities during Global Money Week, we hope to raise awareness on the importance of financial literacy. We are confident that these activities will enable the participating children to gain new information and insights into finance and hopefully instil an awareness of and interest in managing their own money.” concluded Ng.
1 - Child and Youth Finance International