The Scottish Government has announced an additional £85,000 to extend its credit union school savings project.
In the recent debate in the Scottish Parliament, Cabinet Secretary Aileen Campbell committed to continuing the work until September. This is the second extension of the scheme since it was launched in March 2016.
As well as strong support for a growing credit union sector – with calls for more to be done to partner credit unions with employers and to promote them in schools - many MSPs highlighted the work of their local credit unions. 1st Alliance Ayrshire, East Kilbride, Lanarkshire, Pioneer Mutual, Hi Scot, Castle, Drumchapel and Ayrshire Credit Unions were all singled out for their work.
In making the announcement, the Cabinet Secretary noted that: “credit unions are important providers of financial education, they run programmes in local schools to improve financial literacy and encourage our young people to start good habits of saving will enable even more children to engage with a credit union and learn the importance of saving and managing money.”
The work credit unions do in schools was also supported by the opposition parties. Labour spokesperson Alex Rowley MSP noted: “Educating children about the benefits of credit unions means that we can set up a future in which poverty is reduced and children have a better understanding of money and budgeting. I am glad that the Government supports that point in our amendment”.
ABCUL’s Policy Officer for Scotland, Karen Hurst, commented on the additional funding saying, “We’re really pleased that the Scottish Government is recognising the valuable work by credit unions in promoting financial education amongst young people. Aside from this announcement, the Scottish Government have also committed to looking at what else they can do to grow the sector in Scotland, and we a really looking forward to working with the Cabinet Secretary, in how new role, to achieve this”.
You can read ABCUL’s full summary of the debate here.