In 2016 it was counted that children’s financial education week (European Money Week and Global Money Week) involved a record number of participants – about 14 thousand children across Lithuania. This initiative was supported by 30 partners, who organized nearly 500 projects: excursions, lectures, e-lessons, games, conferences, various competitions.
During EMW 2017 members of Association of Lithuanian banks are planning to carry out different initiatives regarding financial education, e.g. employees will give lectures in schools live or online, organize conferences, competitions, invite students to visit their headquarters, answer children questions about money and finance management.
Key actors in financial education and financial literacy
The Bank of Lithuania (central bank) plays a key role in coordinating financial education and financial literacy policy in Lithuania. Since 2012 financial education and literacy have become one of the priority areas in the activities of the Bank of Lithuania. In 2013 the Bank of Lithuania approved the financial education strategy, which aims to improve the financial literacy of the population, promote people’s interest in personal finance management and rational financial decision making.
Nowadays the Bank of Lithuania, the Ministry of Education and Science and other competent institutions are preparing a plan of measures to improve the education of most important financial literacy knowledge, abilities and skills from the young age.
1) The Bank of Lithuania carries out the financial education program named Money Bee (“Pinigų bitė”). The main objective of this program is to increase the financial literacy of the population, while motivating the interest to deepen knowledge of rational personal financial management. The website of the program provides all the relevant information concerning financial services and products, daily financial operations, retirement planning, fraud, advices, initiatives and news. This website is dedicated to people of all ages: from student to pensioner.
2) The Bank of Lithuania constantly organize the financial literacy surveys which are dedicated to residents of the country. In 2015 Ministry of Education and Science with the Bank of Lithuania implemented international financial literacy survey, according to the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) program. In this study fifteen years old Lithuanian students were valued by the personal finance knowledge and skills to adapt them dealing with financial issues. Results will be made public in 2016-2017.
3) The Bank of Lithuania together with social media partners since 2014 carries out a social program “Be careful when borrowing” (“Nepaslysk ant paskolos”). The main goal of this initiative is to encourage residents to take borrowing decisions responsibly.
4) In 2013 the Bank of Lithuania joined the Child & Youth Finance International organisation (CYFI). Since then the Bank of Lithuania coordinates the activities of the Global Money Week in Lithuania together with social partners from financial industry.
Association of Lithuanian Banks & members
The Association of Lithuanian banks is carrying out various financial education activities in cooperation with its members. Major banks have their representatives at the Bank of Lithuania‘s education policy advisory Board and are the major contributors for initiatives of financial education activities.
Members of the Association carry out individual projects and activities in the financial education and literacy field:
1) SEB was one of the first banks in Lithuania to establish the position of a household economist back in 2004 and to start active educational activities that would help strengthening the skills of private individuals in managing their finances. Also this bank is an active participant in the events of the Global Money Week. During these weeks the bank has offered schoolchildren to carry out specially created on-line tests, invited them to participate in interactive financial literacy classes, where schoolchildren competed answering questions about the activities of financial institutions, financial world realities and personal finance management.
2) Swedbank has established the Institute of finances. Its purpose is to monitor and investigate the financial situation of the population and educate the public about personal finance management. The customers of the Swedbank can use a personal financial planning tool “My budget”. This tool is adapted for the active management of personal finances. It helps to see the flow of income and expenses, to set and achieve goals regarding personal financial situation management. Bank also has a special program for young clients.
3) Other members of Association of Lithuanian banks are carry out different initiatives regarding financial education: competitions, excursions, mental battles cycles, lessons. Most of them take part during EMW.
Example of good practice
Swedbank initiate joint initiative “I will be…” (“būsiu…”) which connects schools and companies to inform school students about different professions and carrier paths. Different activities foster a better understanding about carrier choices, current employment market and everyday activities of employees. It provides a direct link between the educational system and the employment area, enabling an informed choice of future carrier. Also relevant objective is to provide information to school children about sound financial behaviour and internet safety, inform them about existing online and mobile tools. While spread of internet and mobile usage has grown, the educational system is unable to satisfy the demand for quality information regarding financial education topics, online safety and related issues. Thus bringing in professionals from various companies to talk about their experience is the best solution to inform and educate young people. The initiative offers different types of activities: running a class lecture, job shadowing, excursions to companies’ offices, webinars and other types of activities based on creative workshops.
SEB bank contributed to the creation of documentary drama “Tomorrow Came Yesterday” that encourages people to think about their future. SEB constantly invites teenage schoolchildren to interactive discussions, also named “Tomorrow Came Yesterday”, involving them into conversations about future society, professions and importance of finance management
Financial education part of curriculum? No PISA financial literacy ranking (OECD, 2012): Did not take part