Added: 26 April 2016
Responsible Business Week – Focus on Financial Education
We believe that financial education is a key life skill, enabling people to gain greater independence and make responsible choices. That’s why we invest in our own programmes and resources, giving students – in primary, secondary and college education – meaningful learning sessions based on real life experiences, staffed by our own trained employees.
By educating the communities in which we operate we’re preparing for future success: a better skilled talent pool to recruit from; a perceptive potential customer base; and, most impactful of all – a stimulated local economy. Of course, none of our sessions are used as a sales tool. In fact, our newest programme, Money Metrics, has a separate identity and is even trademarked under its own name. We are strongly against promoting ourselves and our products when delivering financial education to students.
Unique to the building society sector, we employ a Financial Education Assistant and ensure at least 25% of our staff are trained to deliver financial education to both adults and children.
Paul Winter, CEO of Ipswich Building Society, commented, “Investment in local communities improves the skills and economy of the areas businesses operate in and recruit from. Our financial education initiative comes as part of our goal to be a leading responsible business, whereby we encourage employees to use their expertise to give back to the local community.”
Since 2007 we’ve spent over 2,500 hours delivering primary school financial education, and have a free app for primary school aged children – My Puppy: Maths & Money – designed to enhance financial literacy through games and play. Last year the Society launched its Money Metrics programme – bespoke sessions aimed at providing Year 10 students with the knowledge and confidence to make informed decisions about their finances.
In 2013 the Society launched its Money Management Programme for prisoners at HMP Highpoint, giving them the skills needed to better manage their finances following their release and help prevent reoffending. Following its ongoing success, a similar projects were launched at HMP Hollesley Bay and HMP Warren Hill in 2015.
In 2015, we delivered 698 hours of financial education across primary, secondary and adult groups in Suffolk, an increase of 202% on the previous year.