AGF Marks Financial Literacy Month
Author: Karrie Van Belle
November 20, 2023
November is Financial Literacy Month in Canada, a time to highlight the importance of learning how to effectively manage your personal finances.
It’s also about advancing the National Financial Literacy Strategy 2021-2026 and its goal to help Canadians build financial resilience so they can confidently navigate financial decisions in challenging times and an increasingly digital economy.
The year’s campaign theme, Managing Your Money in a Changing World, focuses on the ever-evolving financial marketplace and the importance of checking up on your financial health, especially as it relates to managing and paying down debt.
When I think about financial literacy, it’s about helping Canadians of all ages and at every stage of life develop the skills they need to understand the basic concepts of finance. Among other things, it’s about effective budgeting, understanding what it means to only make the minimum payment on a credit card and knowing the risks and potential benefits of variable versus fixed-rate mortgages. It’s also about sparking conversations and talking openly and honestly about finances.
At AGF, we believe that It’s never too early to start having conversations about finances. Financial literacy should be viewed as a basic life skill, like reading and writing. It’s critical to ensuring you make informed choices that can help you avoid pitfalls and help you get ahead. And that’s important, because being able to thrive – and not just survive – provides people with a sense of empowerment and self-sufficiency, helps them achieve their personal goals and instills self-respect and self-esteem.
This is something I learned first-hand. When I was a teenager, I had a family friend go above and beyond to help me save money. Her gesture set me up for success as I was preparing for university. I will never forget what she did for me or the lessons I learned. As a result, I am passionate about supporting organizations that educate and help set students up for success at an early age – and I’m lucky enough work at a firm that shares the same passion.
AGF and Junior Achievement: Educating Canadian Students
At AGF Management Limited (AGF), education is one of our key pillars of corporate social responsibility. Through this pillar we have committed to helping foster educational development and opportunities to invest in the future – and this includes our long-standing partnership with Junior Achievement (JA) Central Ontario.
JA is the world’s largest not-for-profit organization dedicated to educating young people about business. Their programs are focused on financial literacy and emphasize the advantages of staying in school and how this choice can positively impact future dreams and career choices.
AGF began partnering with JA in 2007 and over the years has supported financial literacy programs by bringing our employees into the classroom to teach the ‘Dollar with Sense’ and ‘Economics for Success’ programs to Grade 7 and 8 students across the Greater Toronto Area.
This year our investment with JA Central reached nearly 1,200 students through a Career Discovery Series and a field trip to AGF’s Toronto-based Head Office.
And research shows that this kind of education is what Canadian parents want for their children. A recent Mydoh Survey commissioned by Leger found that nine out of 10 Canadian parents of kids aged six to 18 say basic money management is the main skill they hope kids will learn before adulthood.
In addition to AGF’s partnership with JA, I also personally have the honour and great pleasure of sitting on JA Central Ontario’s Board of Governors. These combined experiences have reinforced the importance of instilling the basic principles around saving and investing, and helping Canadians understand their finances at an early age.
AGF: Educating Canadian Investors
In fact, it has helped shape the resources we develop to help our advisors educate Canadian investors. The Investor Education page on our website was designed to provide investors with the financial knowledge they need to make informed choices and achieve their goals with access to resources focused on: Estate Planning, Investing 101, Real Estate, Tax Planning, Volatility and Working With a Financial Advisor.
As a firm we know that a solid foundation in the basics of personal finance is key to understanding and navigating the many moving pieces that go into building a financial plan – including buying a house, going back to school, growing a retirement nest egg, paying off debt or understanding the value of professional advice.
AGF has been bringing stability to the world of investing since 1957, and an important aspect contributing to that stability is strong financial literacy. This Financial Literary Month, we are reaffirming our commitment to investing in educational initiatives and resources aimed at strengthening the financial literacy of Canadians.
The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions of AGF, its subsidiaries or any of its affiliated companies, funds or investment strategies.
AGF Investments is a group of wholly owned subsidiaries of AGF Management Limited, a Canadian reporting issuer. The subsidiaries included in AGF Investments are AGF Investments Inc. (AGFI), AGF Investments America Inc. (AGFA), AGF Investments LLC (AGFUS) and AGF International Advisors Company Limited (AGFIA). AGFA and AGFUS are registered advisors in the U.S. AGFI is registered as a portfolio manager across Canadian securities commissions. AGFIA is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland and registered with the Australian Securities & Investments Commission. The subsidiaries that form AGF Investments manage a variety of mandates comprised of equity, fixed income and balanced assets.
™ The “AGF” logo is a registered trademark of AGF Management Limited and used under licence.
About AGF Management Limited
Founded in 1957, AGF Management Limited (AGF) is an independent and globally diverse asset management firm. AGF brings a disciplined approach to delivering excellence in investment management through its fundamental, quantitative, alternative and high-net-worth businesses focused on providing an exceptional client experience. AGF’s suite of investment solutions extends globally to a wide range of clients, from financial advisors and individual investors to institutional investors including pension plans, corporate plans, sovereign wealth funds and endowments and foundations.
For further information, please visit AGF.com.
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