By Sharryn Dawson
Managing money is a skill that does not occur naturally for most of us adults, much less our children. The problem with this reality is that our children represent our future as a nation.
Given this, when are we as a nation going to start teaching financial literacy to our children? Is it when poverty margins increase and crime rates soar, or when more households start spending beyond their needs, bad loans worsen and our investment climate weakens?
In an effort to prevent this reality from cutting any deeper into our future as a nation, we must start educating our children about money concepts now.
A child who has been exposed to saving and banking in the formative years of his/her development will more likely have a positive relationship with money in their adulthood. On the other hand, a child who has no exposure to concepts of money or savings and is unbanked (not saving) is naturally more likely to have less rewarding experiences with money in their adulthood.
Whose future are we banking on as nation, the banked or the unbanked child? If we agree that every child ought to be educated about money so as to provide them a sound financial head start in life, why aren’t we walking this talk today?
What is also alarming is the fact that discussions about money, its origins and how it is legitimately earned, are not being discussed in our homes regularly today. Poll yourself-
Do you talk about money and the basic principles surrounding it with your kids?
Did your parents talk to you about the principles of money when you were growing up?
And by chance, did your parents’ parents talk to your parents about money management?
Did you answer no to any of these questions? Consider that we are not cultured to talk about money principles and its proper management to our children. Recognising this as a part of a larger socio-economic problem, we need to take swift action to secure our children’s future.
As a parent, guardian, uncle, aunt and/or teacher, whose side are you on? Are you encouraging your child to save? Does your child know where money comes from and how it is legitimately earned?
Failure to teach our children about the basic principles of money, not only robs them of a solid financial start in their adult years, but also our nation’s and our opportunities for advancement.
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