Sterling Bank Plc recently took its financial inclusion drive to the next level with the training of over 20,000 secondary school students nationwide to mark the 2018 edition of the Financial Literacy Day.

The lender also staged a quiz competition among students from 42 schools in Lagos with winners going home with attractive prizes. The Bank’s Managing Director and Chief Executive Designate, Mr. Abubakar Suleiman led other Executive and senior Management team for the exercise as he taught students of Owerri Girls’ Secondary School, Owerri to the delight of both students and teachers of the school. He also gave out various gift items, in line with the bank’s enriching lives proposition and renewed commitment to promoting financial literacy among students. Suleiman taught the students the key fundamentals of financial literacy and re-enforcing the need to encourage savings culture among the youths. He noted that the Financial Literacy Day, which is also in line with the lender’s “One Education” initiative, would further consolidate the strategic focus of the Bank on education and commitment to youth empowerment and development. Suleiman explained the Bank took the decision to expand the coverage beyond the scope assigned to it by the CBN to reach out to more students and teach them how to make informed and effective financial decisions from a young age. This, according to him, would enable them to understand the basic elements of financial management, adding that the Bank had used the opportunity of this year’s programme to impart useful knowledge, discipline and patriotism to the younger generation. He noted that Sterling Bank had remained consistent in providing adequate support for child education by providing materials that could be of help to them in their educational pursuits. Meanwhile, in his address of welcome at the quiz competition in Lagos, the Executive Director, of Sterling Bank in charge of retail and consumer marketing, Mr. Grama Narasimhan, encouraged the participating pupils and students to take the competition seriously. He added that the competition is not just designed for them to win prizes but to ensure sustainable understanding of financial literacy so that they would be able to make independent financial decisions. He said the financial literacy programme was initiated by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to expose young people in primary and secondary schools to the principles of financial management thereby empowering them to make sound financial decisions. In the same vein, the Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer of the bank, Mr. Yemi Odubiyi, noted that the level of illiteracy in the society is still very high.

“We are investing in education in bid to give back to the society. The underpinning philosophy behind this investment is the need to transform our society and people. We believe quality education can transform individuals by contributing to their problem solving and social skills which will ultimately benefit the society at large. It is our belief that investment in people, especially young people, enriching their lives and they will in turn enrich the society,” he said.

The bank organised the quiz competition to test the understanding of students who had been exposed to teachings in financial literacy through financial clubs covering more than 80,000 children spread across the country. Out of about 42 schools that participated in the competition, Glorious Redeemers School, Ijebu-Ode in Ogun State won the star prize of N750,000 followed by Taqua Private School, first runner up, which won N500,000 and Lekki Muslim School, the second runner up which went home with N250,000. The bank also gave N20,000 each to about 15 students (who answered questions correctly) from other schools who came as observers of the programme and N20,000 to two teachers who answered questions correctly. Also, the lender used the occasion to launch Uzaali, a self-paced learning platform designed to provide children with codes to learn computer programming in a fun and interactive environment. Some of the features of the new platform are enhancement of ability of the children to be creative, critical, become problem solver and learn while having fun following step-by-step tutorials and practice with visual editors and exercises.

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