Day 4 saw one of the biggest events of Learn Money Week, an AGM for 42 young leaders of our school microfinance schemes, MyBnk-in-Box.
In just a few academic years the young banker project has helped fellow pupils save over £10,000 and loaned money to start 131 enterprise projects!
There were challenges, games, moonwalking and lots of chicken wraps as Education Officers, MyBnkers, eight school mentors, teachers and Heads of Business, Enterprise, and PSHE from Walthamstow School for Girls, Forest Gate Community School and Mount Carmel Secondary School for Girls gathered at HubWestminster.
We also launched a new version of our online bank (more about that later) and had a live in house PA performance of the MyBnk Money Anthem by JFX Music!
As well as old/young bankers, there was new blood in the room from Westminster Academy as Principal Ms Smita Bora, and Vice Principal Dr Saima Rana rolled up their sleeves and joined in activities. Their school will be starting their first microfinance scheme with us in September! Assistant Headteachers from Mount Carmel and Forest Gate were also there.
Our bank, MyBnk
Walthamstow told their peers about their BIG launch where pupils lodged £150 in a 45 minute lunch break and how they focused on Year 7 students who had just joined the secondary school, with an eye to customer retention.
Three MyBnkers tied their work into a Duke of Edinburgh Award for volunteering. They also told us about international links they had forged with Malwi and Rwandan schools.
“This is a stepping stone for those who want to get into finance or enterprise, a great project to have on your CV and fantastic for raising financial awareness”.
Mount Carmel wowed us with their biggest saver, Caroline, who banked over £300 and an enterprise project shared their first experience of borrowing money and making a profit.
Forest Gate gave us a PowerPoint presentation of their bank and a rundown of numeracy, leadership and personal skills they had developed. Their bank has a stats & marketing unit!
The Challenge – Making the bank better
As well as patting each other on the back, we wanted to hear young leader’s thoughts on making their banks better and encourage more young people to start saving. We did this with an audio-visual breakout team challenge!
Students were tasked by fictional banker ‘Mike’ from Alpenna Bank to improve the medium and long term impact of their banks and develop a media strategy.
Ideas centred on the customer, offering them reasons to save, rewards for regular deposits and differencing themselves from High Street banks.
Top proposals were:
- Texts and emails to remind young people and parents of when the bank is open and what saving incentives are on offer.
- Encourage parents to back their children’s savings by matching deposits and setting up a trust fund at schools.
- Save with the Stars: Celebrity endorsements getting celebs to open symbolic accounts.
- Themed opening days, pirates, zombies, flash mobs and Harlem Shakes to promote the brand.
“We will take new refreshed enthusiasm and creative ideas back to our school and we will be able to get more customers into saving!”