Welcome to the Reserve Bank of Fiji’s Public Awareness column. Over the next few weeks we will cover a series of articles on financial education in Fiji and how it contributes to financial inclusion.
Learning about business in Year 9 sparked something in Ruci Lauvanua, now a Year 12 student at Adi Cakobau School in Sawani. A hands-on project in Commercial Studies class focused on setting up a business through the selling of Chinese lollies to fellow students. “We learned how to budget, how to calculate the value of each item, how much you should get, how much you should put aside and how much you actually used,” she says.
That was four years ago. Today, Ruci has a thriving little business selling Chinese lollies to her fellow students. And she’s picked up other critical money management skills taught in class: saving and budgeting, which has helped her family during times of need such as meeting their cultural obligations that require a financial outlay. “Sometimes when we have financial difficulties, when we can’t pay for some stuff that we are obligated to pay for, the savings that we have put aside is used to pay for those obligations,” she says.