The objective of the Financial Literacy program is to educate and empower participants to make more informed decisions and instill confidence in their ability to manage their business or personal finances.
This program is culturally tailored to each Nation in which it is delivered. For example, in communities that speak Ojibwa, the program is called Managing your Zhooniyaa. In Cree communities, it’s called Managing your Soonias.
To align with the communal values and traditions of storytelling within First Nations, all sessions are taught in small groups where individuals can share their own struggles and triumphs with money.
The key areas of focus in Managing your Money are:
Financial management and goal-setting
Budgeting and expense tracking
Credit and debt management
Savings and investments
This program strengthens the financial situations of participants by empowering individuals to be self-sustaining and make positive contributions to society. For many, this program is the final piece of the puzzle that enables them to return to school or find employment.
The program is also designed to have a lasting effect in First Nation communities socially. Financial management training will allow individuals to seek employment, further their education, build equity, and discover other opportunities that improve their lives and the lives of their children.
In the first six months of Project One Circle, Managing your Money was taught to more than 100 First Nations people. To measure the success of the program, post-session surveys are conducted with participants, as are 3-month and 6-month follow-ups. Results to date show that 100% of participants surveyed after the sessions agree that they have a better understanding of the importance of budgeting, tracking expenses, savings and setting financial goals. 95% stated that they have an increased confidence in their ability to manage their own finances, and 70% of individuals stated they continue to budget and track expenses to both save for future purchases and achieve their goals of being debt free.
Our train the trainer model is used in our financial literacy program. By training trainers and creating these community champions, we ensure sustainability and scalability into more First Nations.