From education to employment

Leading financial education charity launches groundbreaking research to support community organisations at frontline of cost of living crisis

The Centre for Financial Capability Director, Stewart Perry, calls for better support community organisations at frontline of cost of living crisis

As Director of leading UK financial education charity, The Centre for Financial Capability, I believe that every child in the UK should be supported to develop the skills and behaviours necessary to navigate critical financial decisions later in life, starting at primary school. Our relationship with money impacts almost every aspect of our lives, including our health, career prospects and overall future planning and happiness. With the worsening cost of living crisis, the ability to manage our finances and plan for the future has become increasingly difficult and uncertain for many.

There is currently a financial capability crisis in the UK. Globally, we score poorly compared to other countries on financial literacy, ranking 15th out of 29 OECD countries, with only 67% of assessed adults being financially literate. Other research from the Money and Pensions Service corroborates the low levels of financial capability across all ages in the UK, with 24 million adults reporting they lack confidence in handling their money day-to-day. The Centre has carried out research into council tax arrears and the use of payment schemes such as buy now pay later over the last year, finding both of which to be on the rise significantly.

One fifth of primary school children have been taught how to look after their money

Research commissioned by The Centre in 2021 showed only one fifth of primary school children have been taught how to look after their money. This is despite ground-breaking research by the Money and Pensions Service, showing money habits, that stick with children for life, are formed as early as age of 7. The Centre for Financial Capability believes every child should receive financial education to close the current gap in financial capability and ensure no child is left behind.

A new survey to develop families and young people’s money management skills

It is for this reason that The Centre, a leading research organisation in this area, has launched a new online survey to support community-based charities with a longer-term solution to develop families and young people’s money management skills. The research is focused on organisations that work with families and young people in communities across the UK. Research suggests that helping families talk about money can be particularly effective at building long-term financial literacy and resilience for both the parents or guardians and children. The survey considers a range of key challenges for small organisations and seeks to identify what they need to improve financial capability for the families and young people they work with.

We are absolutely delighted to be able to launch this survey, which seeks to address the significant gap in financial education that this country is faced with. In order to tackle the UK’s worsening financial capability crisis, it is crucial that the charity sector is united and supported in their work to build better financial resilience.

Shaping the future

Completing this survey will only take 10 minutes and your charity could be in with the chance of securing a £1000 donation whilst helping to shape the future landscape of early intervention financial education in the UK. It really is a win-win!

We very hope you might feel able to take part in this survey, which will be crucial to informing The Centre’s calls on Government. Improving financial literacy enables people to earn more, make more informed financial choices and build financial security. All of which underpin our overall sense of security, fulfilment and wellbeing.

We hope the findings of this research will help us further highlight to Government the obvious benefits of supporting and ensuring that our young people are able to build better financial resilience against future economic crisis, from an early an age as possible.

By Stewart Perry, Director, The Centre for Financial Capability

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