Thursday, July 29, 2010

Consumer Advocacy Group Roots for Secondary Schools Financial Education Project.

The Business Times July.23-29.2010
The Tanzania Consumer Advocacy society (TCAS) has argued various companies to support its effort to raise financial knowledge and capability in secondary schools in the county.

Last month TCAS launched one year project on financial education to secondary schools in Ilala municipality. TCAS is working in collaboration with Consumer International and launched by Anne Fansen Fund, and is undertaking that initiative to support teachers to be able to integrate consumer financial education in their teaching and outdoor activities. This is virtual to boost student’s ability to handle financial issues after they finish school.
TCAS executive director Bernard Kihiyo said in an interview that sake holders such as mobile banking operators, insurance firms, capital market firms and others need to participate in this effort. The mater is immense interest and its merits effort of various stakeholders, he said.

The project aims at boosting students’ financial capability when utilizing financial service in future. Among the benefiting schools are Al-Haramain ,Azania ,Benjamin Mkapa ,Dar es salaam, Jangwani ,Kisutu girls ,Mchanganyiko ,Mnazi Mmoja , Tambaza and Zanaki girls .

Flora Mwaikenda a Jangwani secondary school teacher praised the program as helpful for teachers. Another teacher named Flavian Samari said the program help to eliminate gaps in the curriculum, like the new technology of Online banking (E banking), and Electronic Business (E business).
The current curriculum has inadequate information which needs to be updated for instance the role of Bank Of Tanzania (BoT), noting that training must include how consumers benefit from the presence of BoT, he said. Kihiyo said the teaching kit describes the key knowledge bits, understandings, skills and value in consumer and financial literacy the student can acquire through studies in commerce, booking, economics and accountancy.

That way they would acquire basic skills related to earning, financial discipline, spending, budgeting, saving borrowing, and other basic consumer education. ‘More so there is also lack of advice regarding alignment financial market challenges and the content with the exist curricular in Tanzania education system .Lack of up to date advice to teachers around strategies to introduce financial education or to break the content by logical and sequential steps in the class room is a problem ‘.he said .

There is also a lack of advice around of appropriate students activities and classroom task to enable students to engage with the content and to demonstrate relevant educational out comes with the financial market challenges on the ground ‘ he said .

The training courses also aim to build teachers’ ability to provide an effective form of disseminating financial education so that student can understand and know what is available in consumer’s rights protection.
When students know what to expect from individual level to institution protection and can integrate these skills to issues of relevance to classrooms review on the subject, it would add students understanding, draw student’s interests connecting with future day to day life experience on the area of financial matters.

Another objective is that provide awareness of financial opportunities, to know where to go for help, to make informed choices, and to take effective action to improve their financial well being. This would hence improve understanding managing financial matters and risks, deal effectively with market complexity and take advantage of increased competition toward the building of sustainable finance sector in Tanzania.

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