The Components of Effective Money Management Programs
The NFEC has identified key components to implementing money management programs for maximum impact. By taking a holistic approach to developing financial literacy programs, the NFEC has achieved improved retention rates and post-test scores, increased participant motivation, and a higher percentage of participants who take positive action steps toward their financial futures.
The NFEC further suggests that financial literacy programs
be designed with sustainability in mind. Many organizations that develop community financial literacy initiatives fail to plan long-term funding and awareness strategies. The result often is a one-time event or promotion that reaches a limited number of people. To affect a community in perpetuity, sustainability must be considered at the initial planning stage.
One way for non-profit organizations and community organizations to develop sustainable initiatives is to collaborate with companies in the financial services industry. The NFEC, for example, has partnered with financial advisors, real estate professionals, credit unions, and other corporations to build win-win partnerships that help improve the financial capability of community members. Collaboration with the personal finance company industry can benefit organizations by building community goodwill, identifying revenue sources, and building deeper connections with current and new clients.
Pre- and post-testing are essential components to developing sustainable financial education programs. Foundations and other grantors often seek to support financial literacy initiatives with a proven success record. Another increasingly important component in the eyes of those who evaluate financial education programs is ability to measure long-term behavior change. Proving that your program makes a lasting difference in the lives of those you touch will help you earn long-term funding for your financial literacy program.
Awareness is another important aspect of any money management program that stands the test of time. All forms of awareness-building (media, outreach, social media, celebrity endorsements, etc.) help organizations locate volunteers and raise funds while they educate the people they serve and raise awareness about the importance of giving citizens a practical financial education.
Hundreds of financial education programs are presented globally each month. Most of them you will never hear about; many others will fail to deliver long-term participant benefits. Ensure that your money management program is properly planned so it may benefit your community for many years to come.
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