By Dipo Olowookere
In its continuous bid to expose the citizenry to financial literacy at very early age in life, Heritage Bank Plc, Nigeria’s Most Innovative Banking Services Provider, joined the world in celebrating the World Savings’ Day with the theme: Our Future Starts with Savings.
The World Savings Day stresses the ingenuity of savings to economic development, which is in line with the bank’s financial literacy programme aimed at introducing its financial literacy edutainment resources to children and young persons under its BUD proposition, was held at the Nigerian Navy Secondary School, Ojo in Lagos.
The MD/CEO of the bank, Mr Ifie Sekibo, emphasized the importance of savings both modern economies and for individuals- young and old alike to attain a higher standard of life and secure the economy.
He stated that Heritage Bank’s involvement in the World Savings celebration was a demonstration of the bank’s commitment to innovation.
According to him, children are very special to us at Heritage Bank, hence we decided to celebrate today with them in a unique way that offers the opportunity to have fun and learn about bank savings.
Mr Sekibo noted that for early positioning of children for global and local relevance, there was need to teach them on how to prioritize savings over spending, which is a valuable life lesson and one that takes time to learn.
According to him, opening a savings account for a child is one of the best ways to introduce him/her to that concept of saving at an early age.
He explained that one of the ways the bank has continued to promote savings amongst children is the introduction of “My day as a banker” which is also the Heritage Bank’s unique way of promoting financial literacy among children, which is the core of the HB Bud Savings Account, specially designed to promote savings habit among children and youths.
In line with its mission to create, preserve and transfer wealth across generations, he said Heritage Bank developed the HB Bud Savings Account to help its customers to create wealth for the children and provide them a future of financial independence.
Team Lead, Financial Literacy, Customer Experience & Analytics, Heritage Bank, Ajiri Efeturi led the 174 secondary school students in attendance on how to save effectively and how to cultivate good saving habits talked on the need to be financially literate in a bid to ensure that one could manage his money effectively as well as make one more responsible and being able to plan for a secured future.
She differentiated between needs and wants, remarking that needs are what one needs to survive while wants are those things which one would like to have but could really do without.
She also gave some tips on smart spending: make a list of everything you want but always be smart about how one spends his money and the need to be a price detective by comparing prices from different stores.
Efeturi, who enjoined not to give more than they had, but keep some money as savings for the future, also introduced them to the Heritage BUD account for children.
According to her, some of the good habits of the account are the need to cultivate the habit of saving, having a financial plan and budget and the need to set aside about 10 percent of their pocket money or cash gifts as savings as well as avoidance of impulsive spending.
On the bad habits of money, Team member, Financial Literacy, Customer Experience & Analytics, Heritage Bank, Chinenyenwa Ozoemena, advised the children to avoid borrowing money, buying stuffs on credit, taking money that is not your own and spending money at once disposal without saving.
Every year, Heritage Bank directly impacts about 350 primary and secondary schools across the country in recognition of the pivotal role children play as the leaders of tomorrow.
Heritage Bank has imparted financial education on more than over 1,500 schools across the country since commencing its financial literacy programme two years ago, as part of its social corporate responsibility.
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