Educating the next generation

This edition of the Financial Capability Week Guest Blog comes NatWest and is focussed on the importance of financial education for young people.

Last week, NatWest appointed Mog Stinchcombe of Channel 4’s Child Genius to help us better understand the big questions young people have about money and to show how our MoneySense programme can help to address them. See more here.

We’ve been teaching young people about money for over 21 years now through our flagship financial education programme. 21 years is a long time but the programme is more important now than ever before. That’s why we’re making a bold commitment to teach another one million young people about money by the end of 2018. We want to equip them to take control of their finances through MoneySense. It’s impartial, independently accredited and provides materials that young people from ages 5 to 18, and their parents and teachers, can use to help them better understand money.

The need for financial education is clear. Research carried out by NatWest found the majority (55 per cent) of children aged 7-15 worry about their lack of financial knowledge. Nearly two thirds of parents (62%) also worry their child will grow up without a good grasp of managing money. Money Advice Service (MAS) research in 2016 has revealed that only four in ten 7-17 year olds have been taught about money management at school. MAS also told us in 2015 that one in five adults can’t read the balance on a bank statement, 21 million don’t have a £500 savings buffer and around 8 million people have problems with debt. This presents worrying concerns for our children’s financial future.

We know that we form our money habits from the age of 7[1] and with banking going through a period of evolution it’s more important than ever for young people to be properly educated in how to manage their money. MoneySense can support parents and teachers to have those conversations.

NatWest has made big steps already. Since the re-launch of MoneySense in 2015, the programme has helped over 194,643 students across 3,441 schools. Over 1,600 staff have registered as volunteers and more than 4,514 teachers across the UK and Ireland have registered to use the programme in their classrooms.

NatWest’s ethos is “we are what we do”. It means we will be fair, open and transparent with customers. It means we will behave in a way that customers expect us to.

We’ll be the bank that prepares young people to have a healthy relationship with their money.

NatWest MoneySense resources can be found at the following link:

  1. [1] Money Advice Service and Cambridge University (May 2013) Habit Formation and Learning in Young Children,

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