When children gain from financial literacy

Tuesday April 16 2019


By James Abola

For 10 years, from 2008 to 2017, our firm ran annual financial literacy courses for young people. We called the course Money Head Start and put the participants in three categories to cater for age and academic level.

Measuring the impact of financial literacy is a difficult task. This partly because financial progress just like financial regression is caused by several factors. I really did not know for sure if the training we were offering was having the intended result. In 2018, I got discouraged and cancelled the Money Head Start Course for the year.

In the past week I got feedback about the Money Head Start Course that brought a smile to my face. The first feedback was from a student who attended our very first training in 2008 when he was in Senior four vacation. The young man told me that the training created in him a strong desire to become an entrepreneur. He went on to start a business and had come to me to partner with him on an activity.

I was still savouring the good news that 20 hours of face to face financial literacy encounter had a long-term impact when I got another feedback. This was from a parent whose son attended the class we ran for P7 leavers three years ago. This was not the first feedback that the parent gave me about impact the course had on her son.

The first two feedbacks were that the young man was providing accountability for the pocket money he got every school term and that he had become more confident when interacting with people. The latest feedback was that the young man had won a prize in a financial literacy competition sponsored by Stanbic Bank Uganda. The winner told his mum that the knowledge he acquired from Akamai Global was very instrumental in his success.

It is very rewarding to know that we did something right.

James Abola is a business and finance consultant.