Teaching Children about Moneyon October 28, 2013
At Sun International Zambia, we host a number of conferences, especially regional ones. They bring together people from Zambia and neighbouring countries for us to enjoy their cultures, languages and dress.
In September we had a conference on Financial Services for children. It was sponsored by financial institutions including The Bank of Zambia. Delegates from all over Southern Africa attended the conference, in fact there were so many participants that they took up the entire Convention Centre.
The delegates included bankers, financiers and teachers. Some of the local teachers brought along students from their school to listen to the discussions. Although money matters can be dull for many people, the bankers and financiers brought up many ways to help children be more at ease with money. They even made if fun by cracking jokes now and again. The aim was that the teachers would learn about banking and to give them ideas on how to encourage their students to use banks.
A banking delegation from South Africa told the audience that they had organised a ‘money week’ for 15,000 students around their country. The children had been taken in to banks; some had even gone to the mint to see how money was made. They said that it had made a huge difference to the children who had never dared to go into a bank before.
For us who are used to banks, this may seem strange, but for students from rural areas, banks are places which can frighten children. To take children inside banks to meet the tellers and the managers was a fun way to make banks seem more friendly and welcoming.
Towards the end of the conference one of the teachers raised her hand. Everyone thought that she had a question. However, to everyone’s surprise, she told the audience that she was going to give us a song. Without any delay she began her song and entertained the listeners. We all applauded her and thanked her for lightening the mood. Only in Africa, I think, will a delegate at a conference get up and sing.
Culture is a wonderful aspect of our lives here and we love it. We all adjourned for tea with a smile on our face.