At the latest Auckland Financial Literacy Practitioners & Providers (AFLPP) network meeting we had three amazing speakers share some powerful stories about the power of budgets.
Keeping with the meeting’s theme: Building Pasifika Financial Capability – Actions and Insights, the speakers shared how families transformed once they started managing their income differently.
First up was the Community Development Manager for the Cook Island Development Agency, Rourina Brown, who spoke of a research project – From Turanga to Ora’anga Mou – that involved 20 Cook Island families and highlighted why it is important for services to understand the collective as well as the individual’s need.
Next up was Geoff Fariu, who shared how the ‘Akara Mamao’ church in Tamaki is running a six week home-ownership focused programme that is followed up with a detailed financial plan and coaching, including ongoing peer support.
This programme shows how housing can be a real catalyst for change, linking home-ownership focused financial literacy with ongoing support enables families to clear debt, improve credit ratings and get a sense of hope and purpose for their financial future.
Lastly, Pelenatete Lam Sam presented on how Vaka Tautua is incorporating financial literacy into support for Pacific families who care for disabled family members.
As many of the families in these programmes had no idea what a budget was, let alone how to create one, the speakers said it’s important to remember that budgets need to recognise what people care about – family, church and cultural obligations, which should not be seen as additional, but essential to their way of life.
Another important theme that came up multiple times during the meeting was the value of education. Education is one way families can save for the future – as if families invest time into the education of their children, the whole family will have a better life together.