New course to create Money Smart people

Dr Pushpa Wood – New Course to create-Pushpa Wood

Money Week 2015 will see the launch of a new financial literacy course designed specifically to build the skills of people with intellectual learning disability.

People First New Zealand Nga Tangata Tuatahi, in association with the Westpac Massey Fin-Ed Centre, will trial the ‘MoneySmarts Made Easy’ course for a small group of students in Wellington before rolling the programme out nationwide.

Customised Version

The course, which is a customised version of the Fin-Ed Centre’s MoneySmarts programme, is written in a mix of plain English and Easy Read, a format in which ‘People First’ has specialist interest.

People First is one of only seven Disabled Person’s Organisations (DPOs) in New Zealand, and the only DPO that is led and directed by people with learning disability.

The MoneySmarts course has been customised by the organisation itself, keeping in mind the specific needs of people with learning disability.

Group trial

The language is easier, using more visual cues and less text, and with constant reconfirmation in the format of the workbooks. We are trialing the course with a small group of students to ensure that the final content works well for this audience.

Once the course has been through the trial it will be added to the educational arm of ‘People First Learn With Us,’ making it available in other areas across the country.

The call for an accessible course to learn more about money came from the members of People First. Members were keen to increase their knowledge and have more control of their money.

Many members of People First were keen on learning money management skills and hence the Course will hopefully fill that need by providing participants with knowledge and confidence to ask appropriate questions about managing their money, especially when others manage it.

The project has been funded by IHC Foundation, a long-time funder and supporter of People First New Zealand.

Dr Pushpa Wood is Director of Westpac Massey Fin-Ed Centre, based in Wellington. She can be contacted on phone (04) 9793560 or 021-755813, Email:

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