Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu (the Māori people of New Zealand's South Island) are the first iwi (tribe) to undertake a financial knowledge survey. The Ngāi Tahu Financial Knowledge Survey is believed to be a world first for indigenous people.
The research will measure the knowledge and confidence of this Māori community and enable further development of focused financial literacy initiatives for them. It recognises that everyone should have the skills to make informed decisions about how they manage money and how they plan for the future.
“We are proud to support Ngāi Tahu in this landmark initiative as part of our broader commitment to improving New Zealander’s financial knowledge,” New Zealand CEO Jenny Fagg said.
All interviewing work will be carried out by tribal members, employed and trained specifically for the research, to increase the involvement and ownership of the project amongst the Ngāi Tahu community.
"The sound financial knowledge of individuals directly influences the health and social wellbeing of whānau, hapū and iwi (family, sub tribe and tribe) and the ability to make meaningful choices and decisions in life," says Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu Kaiwhakahaere (tribe leader) Mark Solomon.
A baseline of financial knowledge among the Ngāi Tahu Whānui will be established using the research findings, informing the development of programs and initiatives to enhance money skills and measure improvements over time.
The results will also enable the financial knowledge of Ngāi Tahu members to be benchmarked against that of all adult New Zealanders, as measured in the 2009 ANZ Retirement Commission Financial Knowledge Survey.
The research is being conducted during March and April with results expected towards the end of July 2010.