Financial education tools making a difference for Indigenous communities

My Money Dream is a financial literacy program offered to Indigenous employees on the Narrabri to North Star Phase 1 project by Inland Rail’s Skills Academy in conjunction with First Nations Foundation. The program is designed to help participants achieve their financial goals by providing education around managing money, budgeting, banking, superannuation and insurance.

Miaya is a Project Management Trainee and is a Moree local

Dozens of eligible workers employed by Trans4m Rail have enrolled in the program with great success. Here is a snapshot of some of their experiences.

Miaya is a Project Management Trainee and is a Moree local. Miaya was keen to learn about loans, superannuation and banking basics to set herself up financially.

“I was always alright at saving, but this has given me information and strategies that have made saving easier. I now know about 0% interest bank accounts and how to live within my means by working out my cost of living too.

“I learnt a lot about financial stress strategies and the best ways to cope with money problems and saving tactics. A lot of this is simple stuff like trying to avoid temptation, making one financial decision at a time and recognising how you deal with stress about money. I’ve learnt a lot about myself and realised that small steps are key to saving.”

At the moment, Miaya is saving money for her financial security and she’s looking forward to organising a holiday for next year.

Wayne is a Civil Labourer and has been working on Narrabri to North Star Phase 1 since January 2021.

As a busy working Dad who already had a good saving strategy in place, Wayne found that My Money Dream has pushed him to spend a little more wisely while still doing the things he loves.

“I am more conscious of spending money. I pay myself out of my monthly wage and manage my spending around that, but I make sure that it suits me. If my kids need something for school, I will price it and borrow the money out of my savings and ensure I put that money straight back when I have it.

Wayne is looking forward to putting a deposit on a house soon as a gift to his growing family.

“I have my third daughter on the way, so I’m saving for them and putting my money towards things for my family.”

Jedd works as a Civil Labourer and jumped at the chance to learn some new skills.

“I wanted to learn how to save, I wasn’t taught this stuff in school, so it was all new information. I learnt how to make budgeting work for me, which helped me put even more money into savings with every pay.”

Jed has found that, since doing the course, saving is easier. He’s more aware of where and when he is spending his money, and he’s been encouraged by seeing how well his savings are going.

For Jedd, he’s got his eyes on a set of wheels. “I was saving to buy a car, and now I’m working towards paying it off as fast as possible! “

You can learn more about this and other programs offered through the Inland Rail Skills Academy by visiting our website or emailing inlandrailnsw@artc.com.au


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