200 colleges across the UK pledge to teach 150,000 students financial skills

22 Feb 2013 13:13 GMT

This year there will be up to a 50 per cent increase in the number of young people who will be provided with money management training during Barclays Money Skills ‘weeks’, organised in partnership with the National Skills Academy for Financial Services.

Over 200 colleges are hoped to take part which will mean 150,000 students will receive vital financial skills, an increase of 50,000 on last year. Each college that takes part in Barclays Money Skills ‘weeks’ can access free teaching resources, ask for Barclays volunteers to help deliver activities, and get support in planning a successful week via a new online college portal. Eligible colleges can also apply for a grant.

An independent impact assessment carried out by the University of Bristol has demonstrated the positive effect that teaching young people money skills has on those who take part. Immediately after completing Barclays Money Skills activities, nine out of ten (92.3%) young people agreed or partly agreed they now knew where to get money advice. When asked if they could define what common financial terms such as a direct debit meant, nine out of ten (90.1%) participants in the intensive sessions could correctly do so.

Barclays has worked in partnership with the National Skills Academy for Financial Services to develop the week-long series of money related activities and provide students with the tools they need to stay in control of their budget. Last year, over 100,000 students participated in interactive money management activities based on topics of interest to young people such as food, fashion and independent living.

Some of the largest colleges which have already signed up to take part include Leeds City College, and Bury College. Both of these colleges have pledged to reach at least 2,500 students each with the programme this year.

Ashok Vaswani, Chief Executive, Barclays Retail and Business Banking, said: “It has never been more important for young people, particularly those who are vulnerable, to be able to access the support they need to learn about money. Having sound financial skills and being confident in managing money is critical to everyday living and achieving future goals. The success of previous Barclays Money Skills weeks shows colleges and students alike really benefit from taking part. I’m delighted to continue our partnership with The National Skills Academy for Financial Services, which helps us to support colleges across the UK to teach young people the skills they need to safeguard their financial future.”

Sylvia Perrins, CEO at the Skills Academy said: “We’re really excited about this year’s Barclays Money Skills ‘weeks’ which will be the largest yet. Our experience tells us that students really benefit from the resources that are offered and it’s brilliant to see that so many colleges have already signed up to the programme. We aim to reach more students than ever this year and we are supporting colleges to get the most out of what’s available.”

Barclays Money Skills ‘weeks’ is run in partnership with The National Skills Academy for Financial Services, alongside the Colleges Development Network, CollegesWales and the Educational Guidance Service for Adults, in Northern Ireland.

Registration for Barclays Money ‘weeks’ is still open and colleges can sign up to take part and access all the resources by going to www.barclaysmoneyskills.com/weeks.

Notes to Editors:

About Barclays Money Skills

Barclays Money Skills is a practical money management programme designed to build the financial skills of 16 – 25 year olds and other vulnerable groups across the UK.

Barclays aim is to share its knowledge and expertise as a financial services organisation to make the biggest social difference. Barclays is working in partnership with respected and experienced charities to deliver the programme to young adults and a range of other vulnerable groups including returning

servicemen and women, those at risk of homelessness, ex-offenders and older people. In March 2011 Barclays announced partnerships with three youth charities - Action for Children, the National

Skills Academy for Financial Services and the National Youth Agency. For further information about Barclays Money Skills visit www.barclaysmoneyskills.com.

About the National Skills Academy for Financial Services

The National Skills Academy for Financial Services is a unique independent employer-led charitable organisation dedicated to growing talent and building professionalism in the UK financial services industry. Its goal is to support future, emerging and existing talent and to ensure the financial services industry is productive and efficient to compete in global markets.

The Skills Academy provides a diverse range of business and talent development support – and all tailor-made for the industry’s needs. Its educational programmes can be accessed in-house, online and locally through the Skills Academy Training Provider Partner Network. As a registered charity, its aim is to provide value-added and cost-effective programmes. Income generated is re-invested in innovative schemes to further support the industry and development of its people across many business areas. For more information, please visit: www.nsafs.co.uk.

About Barclays

Barclays is an international financial services provider engaged in personal banking, credit cards, corporate and investment banking and wealth management with an extensive presence in Europe, the Americas, Africa and Asia. Barclays’ purpose is to help people achieve their ambitions – in the right way.

With over 300 years of history and expertise in banking, Barclays operates in over 50 countries and employs approximately 135,000 people. Barclays moves, lends, invests and protects money for customers and clients worldwide.

For further information about Barclays, please visit our website www.barclays.com.