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Financial wellbeing education for employees

[supplied by Alexi Itsikson]

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Image: Skye Vadas

Australia’s only national Indigenous financial literacy organisation, First Nations Foundation has signed a $750,000 partnership for three years with BHP to extend financial education to more than 2,000 Indigenous BHP employees across Australia.

 

With recent research highlighting that one in two First Nations people suffer severe
financial stress, nine in ten with no financial security and over half the population with no savings, the partnership comes at a pivotal time.


First Nations Foundation, which is dedicated to sharing a wealth of Indigenous-led financial knowledge, will work with BHP to extend their My Money Dream (MMD) platform to remote communities across Australia who are impacted by the operational footprint and surrounding areas.


Created by First Nations people for First Nations people, the My Money Dream program was developed from over 20 years of successful face-to-face training delivery and responds to national research highlighting the significant gap in financial literacy
compared to the rest of Australia.


The partnership includes access for BHP’s Indigenous employees to the My Money Dream platform designed to educate participants in areas of financial well-being, developing better money management skills and habits as well as building financial prosperity.


First Nations Foundation CEO Phil Usher said the long-term partnership with BHP will not only help the Foundation reach more remote communities, but also ensure that their employees are being supported with sound financial management.


“BHP is giving us the autonomy to run our initiative as we see fit and educate as is most appropriate for the varying needs of the Indigenous communities we will reach through this partnership.”


“My Money Dream is a predominately online program however, we know that not all community members will learn in the same way, so we will reach participants anyway we can, be that online, face-to-face or other community or web-based solutions,” said Phil.


The BHP My Money Dream employee training will be run by FNF’s experienced Indigenous trainers, who will facilitate half day workshops covering topics such as maximising income, accessing superannuation and insurances, creating budgets and savings plans, retirement plans and more.


“Our research has shown us that more often than not, when one person in a community embraces and adapts to a new resource, this is shared with friends and family members, garnering a positive flow-on effect,” said Phil.


The first year of the partnership will focus on building relationships with local community organisations as well as training BHP staff groups in preparation of rolling out the My Money Dream initiative.


“BHP has been working hard to support Indigenous staff and are really acknowledging the benefits they have in their business so to come on board to provide financial education is an exciting prospect for us,” said Phil.


“BHP has an opportunity to support a partnership that endeavors to elevate the level of financial literacy and financial management amongst Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, communities and within BHP’s workforce. This in turn has the potential to unlock a range of positive economic development outcomes. We are
excited to partner with First Nations Foundation and trust their expertise in working alongside people and organisations to make change,” said Allan James, BHP Head of Indigenous Engagement Australia.

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