The academy was officially launched on Saturday, December 2, by Hon Alice Kaboyo, the Minister of State for Luwero-Rwenzori Triangle.
Gov’t pledges partnership with Financial Diet Academy
The government has promised to collaborate with the newly launched Financial Diet Academy to bolster financial literacy within the government leadership and across the country.
It will be providing tailored training in different aspects of financial literacy, empowerment and discipline to Ugandans of all walks of life.
Minister Kaboyo, while speaking at the launch, commended the academy founders Barbra Kyobutungi, Patricia Asasira and Sylvia Juuko on the important initiative toward the socio-economic transformation of the country.
“As leaders and as parents, we have for long treated discussions about money as a taboo yet it is very important for all of us,” she said.
The Minister expressed optimism that the academy will significantly complement the government’s work of ensuring efficiency of its development programs such as the Parish Development Model, which is dishing out money to citizens to start projects that will pull them out of poverty.
“But to achieve this, our people have to be continuously sensitised and coached on how to manage this money that the government is allocating,” she said.
“We have had so many development programs, but they have not done much because of the lack of knowledge in managing finances.”
The Minister promised to have the academy team invited to give training to the policymakers on financial literacy matters.
“In cabinet, we recently passed a policy on how to reduce money sharks. We are therefore ready to call upon you to come and educate us because this is a step in the right direction.”
Barbra Kyobutungi, the academy’s operations director said at the launch that the idea was born out of a tragedy that befell one of her friends about 5 years ago.
“At the time, four of my friends and I were privileged to have started working at a very young age; we had nice jobs, we were earning so well, driving cars…”
“But one day, tragedy hit one of us and we had to be there for her. That is when we had an awakening that as much as we thought we were making money, we actually did not have any money. It was very sad,” she recalled.
“It is unfortunate that we do not even have (financial literacy) embraced in the education system. But I am happy that the government and the financial institutions are picking this up.”
Patricia Asasira, the academy’s Finance Director said their services will entail among others, training, one-on-one coaching, training for Saccos, and women groups, in all things to do with financial education.
The programs are tailored for adults aged between 25 - 45, young people from 18-24 years as well as teens.
The modules will cover topics including financial psychology, savings and budgeting, taxes, investment planning, personal finance management, wealth creation and many more.
Mrs Grace Muliisa, the Managing Director of Eco Bank who delivered the keynote speech at the launch, commended the founders for this initiative which she said is likely to open Ugandan’s eyes.
“What you are imparting is priceless; we cannot put a value to it because the schools we go to from primary to university never teach us how to deal with money,” she said.
The launch also saw presentations from other financial experts including Apollo Mboowa, the Manager of Financial Literacy at NSSF, Barbra Kasekende, the Head of Business Advisory at Uganda Development Bank and Tony Mugisha, the Financial Advisor at Eiton Capital.
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