The latest Momentum/Unisa Consumer Financial Vulnerability Index (Momentum/Unisa CFVI) shows that despite feeling financially exposed, consumers are not changing their behaviour and continue to live beyond their means. The survey reveals that a significant driver of this is low levels of financial literacy.
To help more South Africans become financially literate, financial services provider Momentum teamed up with AI-powered chatbot, FinEazy for a two-month drive to improve financial literacy in South Africa by teaching the basics of financial responsibility.
Accessible through Facebook Messenger and on a Web Interface, this partnership provides a free financial literacy course that South Africans can do in the comfort of their homes over the lockdown period.
Momentum Consumer Financial Education Specialist, Claire Klassen says, “Almost a third of South Africans don’t even have a bank account and basic finance is barely taught in schools. This course is designed to improve the way South Africans learn about financial responsibility.”
“In our country where financial literacy is low, this course enables people to make informed decisions when it comes to finances – helping to protect them and their families, and communities from the lasting effects of ill-informed financial decisions,” says Klassen.
This platform personalises the learning experience and can be easily accessed through common messaging apps or online. “The FinEazy chatbot tunes into the level of financial knowledge of our users and guides them on their learning journey, to achieve financial literacy in a creative way,” says Klassen.
Through the chatbot journey, participants choose a character that reflects their position in life and are then faced with fictional financial situations with multiple choices to make. Some decisions can lead you to poor financial choices, and others will help you learn about what it means to be financially responsible. Users are even able to ask questions and the chatbot will respond with the right information.
“It is as simple to use as texting a friend, and machine learning means that the chatbot will learn about you and generally personalise your interaction with it,” says Klassen.
“We encourage everyone who feels the need to learn more about financial responsibility to register as soon as possible as the course can take up to two weeks to complete,” says Klassen.
To encourage participation, Klassen says that any South African who registers for the FinEazy course and completes it the fastest by 30 June will be in the running to win a smartphone valued at R5000. Even if the user registers on 30 June, they may not be able to win a Smartphone, but Klassen says they will still have access to the platform to complete their course.
FinEazy user Sinethemba Dyoki says, “I really enjoyed it and I would love to learn more. It’s such a great platform for everyone to learn more about budgeting, saving and investing, especially young people.”
Another user, Alisha Juggernath says, “Thank you so much! It was an exciting yet informative way of learning! I really did enjoy learning with FinEazy!”
Both courses can be accessed immediately using the following links to get started with the financial literacy course material:
Start the FinEazy course on Facebook Messenger:
Start the FinEazy course on web interface: