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PFIP develops financial Education Curriculum for Vocational students in PNG

Goroka, Papua New Guinea – Work has begun on embedding financial education concepts into the vocational curriculum of a technical institute in the Eastern Highlands of Papua New Guinea.

The Kamaliki Technical Vocational Training Institute formalised a partnership yesterday morning with the United Nations Capital Development Fund through its pacific-based programme the Pacific Financial Inclusion Programme (PFIP).  The partnership will see the development of Financial Education (FinEd) curriculum for young adults in Goroka.

Through the FinEd Project, it is expected that from the 2018 school year, financial education will be firmly embedded within the institution’s curriculum, ensuring that approximately 1,000 students will gain exposure to personal money management and investment in existing trade courses on an annual basis.  Financial education is essentially learning towards the development of personal financial competency.

Funded by the European Union and DFAT, this pilot FinEd initiative is a result of the 2020 Money Pacific Goals endorsed by Papua New Guinea in 2009 and Maya Declaration commitments made in 2013.  Financial Education and Financial Literacy are joint national priority areas identified within the National Financial Inclusion Strategy 2016-2020 launched by the Bank Papua New Guinea in December 2016.

Development of a curriculum framework and accompanying teaching and learning resources is being undertaken in Goroka by BASIX Consulting & Technology Services, with a pilot period of six months to follow. The Consultants will provide guidance to ensure strong and sustainable implementation at the end of the pilot.

PFIP’s Financial Education Specialist Abigail Chang said that the pilot initiative aims to address the low levels of financial competency amongst the next generation of adults in the region, as evidenced in the findings of a 2013 Financial Competency Survey of low-income households in Papua New Guinea. She added that low financial competency left low-income households vulnerable to predatory lending and other scams.

“PFIP’s FinEd programme will empower these young men and women to confidently interact with the money economy and display competencies to manage their daily expenditure as well as starting a savings culture,” she said.

“In this increasingly globalized day and age, it is imperative that we are setting up these students to successfully make a living in the modern economy, thereby contributing to community and national growth.”

Kamaliki Technical Vocational Training Institute is managed by the Eastern Highlands Provincial Government and is the largest technical vocational training institution in the Highlands Provinces, with over 1,000 students annually, of whom 25% are female.  With the motto “Skills for Life”, the Institute located in Kamaliki, Goroka offers trade courses in building, welding, electrical and electronics, tourism, hospitality, business and motor vehicle repairs and services.

Whilst endorsing the agreement, Chairman of Kamaliki Technical Vocational Institute, Mr. Thomas Omero said, “By introducing Financial Education within our trade courses, we are bringing the real world into our classrooms and providing our students with practical learning that will benefit not only themselves but their families far into the future.  We are excited to be the first technical vocational training institution in the Pacific to be working on this ground breaking Financial Education Project with the UN’s Pacific Financial Inclusion Programme.”

It is envisaged that at the end of the first and second year programmes of study, students will be leaving Kamaliki with both the skills and knowledge to make responsible financial decisions.  It is expected, that from the first semester of 2018, Financial Education will be firmly embedded within Kamaliki Technical Vocational Institute’s trade courses.
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