Financial Literacy Workshop – powered by ANZ Royal

Phare Circus performers and staff attend financial literacy workshop by ANZ Royal

Financial Literacy Workshop – powered by ANZ Royal

 By Emily Martin

The primary missions of Phare, The Cambodian Circus are to fund Phare Ponleu Selpak non-profit school and provide well-paying jobs to the graduates. As part of our social responsibility, we also identify other professional and life-skills trainings that would be beneficial. These are funded by the sustainable tourism activities of the circus.

This week a group of artists and employees from Phare Circus joined with a number of staff from Sala Bai to par-take in a financial literacy workshop thanks to the support of ANZ Royal. The workshop was organized by VBNK and hosted by A+B=3, a social enterprise that creates and delivers tailor-made financial education programmes to young adults, low income workers, rural communities, immigrants, factory workers and other populations unfamiliar with money management. They work in eight countries—Cambodia, Hong Kong, Philippines, China, USA, Kenya, Tanzania and India—and have trained an estimated 19,000 people since first launching in 2005.

Both organisations work to provide quality and sustainable jobs to the people they work with. For Phare it’s giving artists the opportunity to hone their art and make a living with their skills, for Sala Bai it’s working with young Cambodians from underprivileged families to give them vocational training in the hospitality sector – ensuring well-paying jobs at the end of it.

For both organisations the employees and trainees have come from difficult social and economic backgrounds. This usually means that families do not have the ability to save, enough money to ‘manage’ and many loans are taken out to cover costs such as motorbikes and schooling.

However with the support of projects like these two the people involved can start earning a decent wage. The next important and almost vital step is to make sure that they know how to manage this inflow of earnings.

With the support of ANZ Royal and partnership with Phare, The Cambodian Circus, we were able to offer a financial literacy workshop to our employees, as well as inviting a number from Sala Bai.

The workshop focused on how to create a budget and how to keep track of where your money is being spent each month.

SAUT Sophal is a teacher at Sala Bai Hotel School. She and the others from the school are planning on taking their learnings back to share with their students.

“I joined a financial management workshop today so I am very happy because I learnt a lot… the first point that I learned was about how to save and how to write a report every month that can let us know how much we have spent every month and how much left there is at the end of the month. It makes it easier for us to control for the next month.”

“The second point which I think is very interesting for me was if we want to spend some money we have to think first, is this a need or just a want? This is very important for us – do we really need it or not? A good way to help prioritise money is by dividing it into different envelopes for different kinds of expenses and spending. For example for clothes, for food, for electricity… so we can divide our money and put it all in the different envelopes and that way this month if we take all the money in the envelope then we can’t take any more…its finished… this helps us to see well how to manage our money and where we are spending it… it will help us avoid the debt.”

“I think that this workshop is very important. Before we didn’t real know how to manage our money. It’s so difficult especially for us… we work for an NGO like this, and we get a salary and we know that our salary is not too bad – it’s good… but at the end of the month we don’t know where our money has gone.”

“At the end I would like to say thank you to ANZ royal for creating this opportunity for a workshop like this. Thank you very much and I wish good luck for everybody.”


Read more about the ANZ Royal and Phare, The Cambodian Circus partnership.

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