By Thandiwe Kubere
MASERU – The Central Bank of Lesotho in partnership with different stakeholders, held a wrap up presentation for money month campaign. This was to give a report on the accomplishments, challenges encountered during the campaign and areas which need improvement for better educating Basotho on how to save and use their money wisely.
CBL Cooperate Affairs Napo Rantsane, stated the report came after introspecting and looking back at the overall performance of the campaign, the amount of people it reached- paying special attention to the community of Botha Buthe, which was the primary focus for this year’s event, as well as how to better the coming money month campaigns from the discoveries made.
Corporate Communication Chief at CBL and member Financial Education Steering Committee (FESC) Ephraim Moremoholo deliberated that money month Lesotho is part of the global money week campaign which normally takes place annually around March. This year’s money month was hosted from April 27th to May 27th in two districts which are Maseru and Botha Bothe. The theme for Lesotho’s campaign, which was aligned to the global money week campaign, was plan your money, plant your future. This was a joint initiative by the financial sector and other stakeholders including the government ministries, in order to assist the nation with relevant and necessary skills of handling money, which further improves the country’s economy.
Moremoholo added that the initiative of planting the right education in the nation about the wise usage of money, which includes, saving from a young age, investing and making necessary insurances while there is still time and the right muscle to do so, is similar to planting a tree, watering it and ensuring that it has the necessary nutrients to help it grow well. “It is therefore important that we sensitize and educate our youth such that they are capable of making informed financial decisions when they get to the working environments. We believe the campaign was successful in achieving that because many schools were reached out to and we saw youth participating in a way that gives hope that they at least get the idea of how to handle money appropriately”, he said. The primary target was the community of Botha Bothe, paying more attention on the youth because they have time and a greater chance of making good investments and plan for a fruitful future.
The plan was to reach almost all Basotho such that at least they have an idea of what the money month is about. For the campaign, stakeholders used different channels of communication in order to sensitize the public and a reach of 346 287 people was achieved through virtual platforms. Physical interactions were also conducted with the community and even though the number was not as high, the campaign had an even better impact and there was more understanding on financial challenges encountered by the society.
Some of the challenges encountered, are those of people with disabilities who pointed out that there are no ATMs in the country which are suitable and accommodative for them to use. Again, the main challenge facing most young employees is that they do not really understand the importance of saving, investing and using money wisely at their age because they believe they are too young to start thinking that way.
The accomplishments of Lesotho money month campaign are that there was active participation of industry leaders in the launch despite the distance. There was strong collaboration between FESC and all the key stakeholders in the district. Additionally, there was increased participation by the financial industry, particularly in the form of participation. There was also a joint effort by the participating organizations to reduce the cost of implementing the event.
In the wrap up discussions, it was decided that educating the society on the appropriate way of handling money should not be something done once in a while because helping the nation better plan the future will make an immense improvement in the economy of the country.