India’s First National Finance Olympiad for Schools

Exactly one year before, we were introduced to the live concept of Demonetisation. Everyone started talking about it’s pros and cons. All of us had a huge change in the way we transacted with our immediate surroundings. From vegetable an fruit vendors to cabs and restaurants, digital wallets, UPI and Card payments became very familiar. In all this, Demonetisation highlighted a very big need for all of us. The need to be prudent with our money. India prefers cash in hand vs cash in bank. It makes us feel more secure. We can always use the cash in hand for emergencies or big purchases. But come to think of it, is the cash in hand giving really good when it comes to growing our savings?  With inflation, the value of our stored cash decreases everyday and we don’t have a control over it. The things we can buy with that cash a year later with be less as compared to current date. Then why should we insist in having cash in hand?

“If you don’t make your money work for you, your money will make you work for it”

As per a famous saying, “If you don’t make your money work for you, your money will make you work for it”. It is like cooking an nice bowl of soup. If you don’t stir it well, it will settle down and its flavours will be spoiled.

We need to learn the need to make our money work for us and feel secure about it. Traditionally, we invest in Gold or open a separate bank account where we deposit our savings. How much does it appreciate over a shorter span of time? The answer is less than 10% to be generous.

What if we decide to put that money in tools that yield higher returns? Are there any safe ways to invest and feel secure about it? The answer is yes! There are multiple options like Equity, Mutual Funds, Debt Funds, Govt Bonds, NSC, PPF etc. Traditionally we have been told that we lose money in stocks. That true, only if we are careless about it. But if we are really prudent about where and how to invest our hard earned money, it will not only grow but will also be secure.

However, for most of us when we start working, we end up spending our salaries on the things we want and out loved ones. By the time, we realise we should be saving, its late and there are very few avenues that we are aware of. These would generally be Gold or an another savings account or say a term deposit. Being unaware about the avenues to save money and not having the time to learn about them are two important reasons that cause this.

People usually say things like, “I can’t save enough”, “I don’t know how to save money”, “I don’t have the time to learn about it” etc. Much like life skills, this is also an important skill that we should know! There is no supplement to grooming yourself or learning people skills and other social skills. All of us are taught about it right from our childhood days. Because we know they are essential for survival.

What if, in the same way we could teach the need to save money and the avenues to grow it? Can we condition our students to realise the value of things they buy and if they really need them. Giving them the exposure and knowledge about various tool at their disposal. It will create a strong foundation for a bright financial future! Through our current education systems we are providing sound professional knowledge but there is still a need to provide sound financial acumen to students for them to take better decisions.

We cannot go back and change the things we were taught, but we can definitely change what we teach our next generation. They already have a much broader horizon to interact with, empowering them with the right skills and attitude will only make them stronger.

We believe that starting early in educating children about sound financial practices, will create a strong foundation for a brighter tomorrow! They may not get affected by an event like Demonetisation like we were.

Know more about how we are empowering schools and children through Financial Education:

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