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We live in your world - March 2011

We live in your world - March 2011

Building financial skills in Indigenous communities

Building financial skills in Indigenous communities

Our MoneyBusiness program – a partnership with the Australian Government - is helping Indigenous Australians in remote communities build vital money management skills so that they can make informed financial decisions.

Since its launch in 2005, MoneyBusiness has helped more than 17,000 Indigenous Australians build money management skills and confidence, covering issues like planning for the future, making money last until payday and tenancy agreements.

For example, one NT man attended a Moneybusiness workshop on ‘making your money last until payday’ and subsequently decided not to apply for a costly car loan.  

The workshop helped him set up a family budget which identified that the loan would cost him more than he could afford to repay with his current spending.

He decided not to apply for the loan and with his new family budget in place he was able to save for part of the cost of the car and subsequently, take out a loan with reduced payments.

MoneyBusiness was initially piloted at a number of remote sites in the NT and WA. Since then, the Australian Government has extended its use to around 215 sites across the Northern Territory, Queensland and Western Australia.

Local Indigenous people in each community have been employed as money management workers, providing Indigenous individuals and families with coaching in financial literacy, budgeting, bill paying and developing savings plans.

The MoneyBusiness kit, supports money management workers providing them with a comprehensive set of nine education workshops and a range of support materials such as a DVD, case studies, activity sheets and group discussion handouts.

We developed the kit in close consultation with local communities, Indigenous workers and the Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs to ensure it is culturally appropriate , suitable for learning in remote locations and takes into account particular issues facing Indigenous people. 

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