Westpac Leads Financial Literacy Drive

Westpac announced today that the Bank has delivered its financial literacy workshop to 4,737 people across Fiji, the highest number of participants to any financial literacy workshop in the country by a Commercial Bank as at end of December, 2012.

According to statistics collated by the Financial Systems Development and Compliance Group of the Reserve Bank of Fiji, Westpac Banking Corporation covered 42% of the 11,308 people who attended financial literacy training in Fiji for 2012.

The Reserve Bank of Fiji’s Deputy Governor Mr. Inia Naiyaga said that “this is the second year in a row that Westpac in relation to the total number of participants has led the way in providing financial literacy training for adults in Fiji. The RBF fully supports and applauds the efforts by the various providers in the community who are contributing and empowering consumers through financial education and awareness”.

Westpac’s Financial First Steps workshop teaches basic money management through identifying between needs and wants, tracking spending habits and the need to keeping a budget. Westpac also offers a financial literacy workshop called Business Basics that helps participants understand financial reports including balance sheets.  The best part about Westpac’s financial literacy workshops is that they are free and recipients receive a handbook.

Westpac’s General Manager, Adrian Hughes said, “We have a dynamic and robust process for the delivery of the Financial First Steps workshop. I’m really proud of the way our staff have embraced the challenge to assist people make better financial decisions”.

Westpac’s Microfinance Unit and representatives from 19 Westpac branches has rolled out its workshops to various organisations including the Ministry of Women and Poverty Alleviation, Department of Youth and Sports, South Pacific Business Development Limited, church groups, women’s groups and villages. In urban centres many businesses also included the Financial First Steps workshop as part of their staff welfare program.

Jyoti Maharaj, Westpac’s Microfinance Manager said, “It gives me enormous satisfaction to see the positive impact we make on people’s lives in helping them to achieve their financial goals.”

“Last year we went to offices in the city, rural village community halls and homes, and by boat to islands like Bau, Viwa, Kadavu, Koro and Lau. Participants were very grateful for the workshop, either learning something new or being reminded of the need to spend within their budgets and plan for the future.”

Westpac encourages anyone who thinks they may benefit from a financial literacy  workshop to register their interest at their nearest Westpac branch or call Westpac Customer Service Call Centre on 132 032.

This year, Westpac Fiji celebrates 112 years of serving the Fiji community. The bank today employs more than 470 people, operates 20 branches and has an expansive ATM and EFTPOS network to service thousands of customers, providing personal and business banking, corporate banking, foreign trading and international services.


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