More South Africans banking

first_img6 December 2006The number of South Africans with a bank account rose by around 1.5-million between 2005 and 2006, reaching a total of 15.9-million people or 51% of the country’s 31.1-million adults (people over the age of 16).And the entry-level Mzansi bank account, introduced in 2004 to offer an easy-to-use and affordable banking solution for “the unbanked” in South Africa, has proved “undoubtedly a success”.That’s according to FinMark Trust’s FinScope SA 2006, an annual national household survey of financial services, needs and usage among South Africans.According to the survey, released this week, South Africa’s banked population increased by 11% between 2005 and 2006, far outstripping the 1% population growth in the same period.However, the ability of the banking sector to draw in the other half of the population will depend, ultimately, not on provision of easier or cheaper access, or better financial education, but on fundamental changes in the economic realities of the country.Mzansi: ‘impressive uptake’South Africa’s financial sector charter, signed in October 2003, commits the country’s financial institutions to extending first-order retail banking products to 80% of South Africans in the lowest income bracket (LSM 1-5) by 2008.According to FinScope, South Africa’s low-cost bank account, Mzansi – introduced with these lower-income customers in mind – claimed the lion’s share of new banking customers over the last year.The percentage of South Africans holding an Mzansi account rose from 2% in 2005 to 6% in 2006 – a staggering growth of around 250%. In the same period, the percentage of the banked population using Mzansi grew fourfold, from 3% to 12%.Claimed Mzansi account holders are nearing the 2-million mark, the survey finds, noting that this might be an under-reading of Mzansi’s actual size: the Banking Association SA reported that 3.3-million Mzansi accounts had been opened by June.FinScope says this discrepancy “could be because many users of Mzansi do not actually realise the type of account they hold. For example, PostBank account holders were all switched to Mzansi accounts.”Most importantly, according to the survey, Mzansi has been successful at drawing previously unbanked people into the banking sector, not solely causing account switching among the already banked.“Sixty percent of people holding a Mzansi account claim this to be their first bank account, an encouraging indicator that the product is being adopted by its core target market.”The financial divide persistsHowever, while the drive to bring more South Africans into the banking system appears to be working – and despite strong indicators that uptake of the Mzansi account will continue to grow – the financial divide between rich and poor in the country will, if it persists, sooner or later put the brakes on this growth.According to the survey, investment and even saving money is still uncommon among South Africans – and so is borrowing – with unemployment and lack of money to save being the two main reasons given for not being banked.“Where people do borrow, they do so mainly to buy food, pay for funerals, school fees or medical expenses. The reason is clearly the degree of poverty: 17% of South African say they have no income at all, and nearly one-third of South Africans testify that they do not even have enough to eat.”That over one-third of people (35%) who know about Mzansi still consider the account unaffordable “highlights the real barrier to entry that bank charges pose, no matter how low,” the survey finds.For “a great proportion of our population,” any sort of banking product is unaffordable – and, as things stand, probably unnecessary.“As such, unless the economic realities of our country change fundamentally, the Mzansi account is likely to reach a ceiling in terms of what it can realistically achieve.”SouthAfrica.info reporter Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more


Eyes Wide Open: Teens and Parenting

first_imgBy Kiara McNair and Eveny Griffinpixabay [girl-869205_1920 by Foundry, June 24, 2015]Taking the first steps, starting school, making friends. These are some of the things associated with children growing up. One of the scariest parts of growing up in the eyes of parents is teenage dating. Most parents think of what the appropriate age to begin dating is, what time to set curfew, and who they want their child to date. Dating violence is less thought of, but a very important topic concerning teenage dating. Largio (2007) states “eighty-one percent of parents did not know or did not believe that teen dating violence was a problem”[1]. He also describes teenage dating violence as “(1) acts or threatened acts of some form of abuse; (2) young people; (3) and some form of intimate or romantic relationship. Thus, any form of abuse or threat of abuse that occurs between young people who are in a dating relationship constitutes teen dating violence” [1]. So why is this so important to discuss with teenagers of all ages? Teenage dating violence affects a large population of teenage students. Knowing the signs, symptoms, and preventive methods can be influential in protecting your teen from becoming a victim.Imagine yourself as a parent receiving a phone call from the school principal informing you that your child has been a victim of dating violence. Thoughts immediately begin to fill your mind including the feeling of self-doubt. Why would this be important to service professionals? As a service professional, the teen will need services to cope with the abuse as well as the parent. In order to fully be able to support the teen, the parent must move past the feeling of self-guilt. How can this be done? To begin, the service professional must know the signs of dating violence. Once the parent identifies these signs in their child, the service professional can identify how their child purposely hid the signs. The next step would be providing the parent tips for communicating with the teens concerning the abuse. As service professionals, we understand that teenagers often shut down when parents attempt to talk to them about difficult topics. The service professional can help the parent develop skills to overcome these communication barriers.What about the teenage victim? Think about how the teen must be feeling: self-blame, insecurity, and possibly what they think is love towards the abuser. It is critical for the service professional to know the effects dating violence has on a teenager whether they are the victim or perpetrator. Being knowledgeable of the possible feelings the teenage victim can be experiencing will assist the service professional in having empathy which leads to establishing a great rapport. Having an understanding of how this topic affects everyone involved can greatly influence the success of intervention.As we did research on Teen Dating violence, we learned that teens use violence as a means to control their partner and coerce them into doing what their significant other wants them to do. According to Largio (2007), one in five girls will become victims of domestic violence during their high school years [1]. As service professionals, we must be aware of the signs and symptoms that both teens and parents should look for when teens get involved with significant others. Parents and teens can work together by having open communication. How can parents have open communication? By actively listening to the teen, engaging in their story and not blame the victim/client.We must learn to actively listen to our clients, build rapport and validate their stories, especially our teen clients because they are even more susceptible to the opinion of others during this time of constant transition in their lives. We must actively listen and engage in a way that doesn’t push our biases and personal beliefs onto our client but allows us to work together with the client, and help them to work through the abuse and talk openly about their dating life. How would you encourage your child to talk to you about dating violence?References[1] Largio, D. M. (2007). Refining the Meaning and Application of “Dating Relationship” Language in Domestic Violence Statutes. Vanderbilt Law Review, 60(3), 939-981.This post was written by Kiara McNair and Eveny Griffin, guest bloggers for the MFLN Family Development (FD) team which aims to support the development of professionals orking with military families. Kiara and Eveny are masters-level marriage and family therapist (MFT) in training enrolled in the Marriage and Family Therapy Department at Valdosta State University. They also work as MFT interns at VSU’s FamilyWorks Clinic, a community-based family therapy clinic. You may find more about the authors, here. Find out more about the Military Families Learning Network FD team on our website, on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and on LinkedIn.last_img read more


Grizzlies coach Bickerstaff gets $25,000 fine from NBA

first_imgBickerstaff was ejected with 7:41 remaining in the Grizzlies’ 92-88 home loss to the Utah Jazz on Wednesday.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout Clippers handle Griffin, Pistons AFP official booed out of forum Read Next Slow and steady hope for near-extinct Bangladesh tortoises MOST READ View comments Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Globe Business launches leading cloud-enabled and hardware-agnostic conferencing platform in PH 2 ‘newbie’ drug pushers fall in Lucena sting Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC LATEST STORIES Memphis Grizzlies interim coach J.B. Bickerstaff calls to players during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Utah Jazz on Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018, in Memphis, Tenn. (AP Photo/Brandon Dill)NEW YORK — Memphis Grizzlies coach J.B. Bickerstaff has been fined $25,000 by the NBA for directing inappropriate comments toward a game official and failing to leave the court in a timely manner after an ejection.The NBA announced the fine on Friday.ADVERTISEMENT John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. NEXT BLOCK ASIA 2.0 introduces GURUS AWARDS to recognize and reward industry influencers Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games PLAY LIST 01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games00:50Trending Articles00:59Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon Citylast_img read more


Educational Assessment Centre Opens in Mandeville

first_img The parish of Manchester now has a diagnostic and care centre, which will cater to the special learning needs of children with autism and cognitive challenges.The Educational Assessment and Resource Centre, located on the grounds of Church Teachers’ College in Mandeville, was built by the Government at a cost of $35 million.It boosts two play and learning rooms, observation room, a nurses’ station, an administrative section, as well as lunchroom, bathrooms, offices and laboratories.On staff are a special educational psychologist, a clinical psychologist, and special education teachers. The spacious two-storey structure will open to the public on March 11.Minister of Education, Youth and Information, Senator the Hon Ruel Reid, said that the establishment of the centre is in keeping with Government’s focus on ensuring that the education system is inclusive and enables students to maximise their full potential. Minister of Education, Youth and Information, Senator the Hon. Ruel Reid, delivers the keynote address at the opening of the Educational Assessment and Resource Centre at the Church Teachers’ College in Mandeville, Manchester, on February 19. The Educational Assessment and Resource Centre, located on the grounds of Church Teachers’ College in Mandeville, was built by the Government at a cost of $35 million. Story Highlights The parish of Manchester now has a diagnostic and care centre, which will cater to the special learning needs of children with autism and cognitive challenges.center_img “We are going to use the diagnostic centre to make sure that no child is left behind in the region,” he said, noting that it will customise learning through the use of technology.He was delivering the keynote address at the official opening of the centre on February 19.Senator Reid said that global figures indicate that one in every 10 students is likely to have severe special needs.He noted further there are persons with mild autism, who go undetected. “Indeed, one in every 42 boys is autistic and one in every 167 girls is autistic. Autism is on a spectrum of mild to severe. Some of the challenges faced in the classroom are because this goes undetected,” he said.The Education Minister said that in addition to establishing assessment and diagnostic centres, increased focus will be placed on an early stimulation/intervention strategy that addresses needs during the first 1,000 days of the child’s life.The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has said that the period spanning between conception and one’s second birthday is when the foundations of optimum health, growth and neurodevelopment across the lifespan are established.“Learning begins from conception because the first 1,000 days from conception to age two is a key age; two is the highest point of their cognitive neurological development (brain capacity)” Minister Reid added.In his remarks, Jamaica Teachers’ Association (JTA) President, Dr. Garth Anderson, said the body has been advocating for the early assessment of students entering the education system at the early-childhood level for the purpose of developing a learning profile and targeted intervention.Jamaica Teachers’ Association (JTA) President, Dr. Garth Anderson, addresses the official opening of the Educational Assessment and Resource Centre at Church Teachers’ College in Mandeville, Manchester, on February 19. It boosts two play and learning rooms, observation room, a nurses’ station, an administrative section, as well as lunchroom, bathrooms, offices and laboratories. Dr. Anderson, who is also Principal of Church Teachers’ College, urged that the diagnostic centre be fully utilised to “fulfil its mission of not only assessing students but to also be effective in changing the way in which we do teaching and learning”.last_img read more


At the launch of Labours European election campai

first_imgAt the launch of Labour’s European election campaign, Jeremy Corbyn told his audience that a few weeks ago he decided to stop asking about Brexit at PMQs and “thousands of people said thank you”. Instead, he would question the Prime Minister on austerity – council budget cuts, social mobility, life expectancy, generally her failure to tackle the “burning injustices” that she promised to address in 2017. The Labour leader hasn’t made Brexit a key topic in any of his weekly head-to-heads since almost two months ago.It was no surprise that Corbyn didn’t opt for Brexit today then, even though he held talks with the PM last night and the government has newly announced that the withdrawal agreement bill will be brought to the Commons in June. With the Tory benches once again particularly sparse, the Labour leader chose to go on the theme of ‘for the many not the few’. Although the slogan is also being used for the Euro elections, none of those manifesto policies were raised (perhaps they will get an airing next week, the day before recess begins). Corbyn’s sole focus was domestic.“In the last two years, nine of the UK’s richest hedge fund tycoons have donated £2.9m to the Conservative Party,” he pointed out. “Is this a government for the many or in the pockets of an elite few?” This set the tone for the rest of the session, which could well have been mistaken for a pre-general election PMQs. Armed with quotes from economist Sir Angus Deaton, who this week warned that the UK’s vast pay, wealth and health inequalities were “making a mockery of democracy”, Corbyn hit the government hard on its economic record.The Labour leader took the opportunity to promote his big policy announcement from last weekend, when he used a Young Labour event to reveal that the party would extend the real living wage of £10 an hour to under-18s. “If you’re old enough to do the job, you’re old enough to be paid the wage to do the job. Does the Prime Minister agree with that principle?” Of course, May’s reply confirmed she didn’t, as she argued that abolishing the ‘youth rate’ of minimum wage would cost young people jobs – the same bad argument peddled by the Conservatives when Labour introduced the NMW in 1998.The Prime Minister point-blank refused to answer the following pertinent questions. And no wonder. Corbyn raised the genuinely shocking cases of a food bank being set up for schoolchildren in Great Yarmouth (represented in parliament by Tory chair Brandon Lewis) and another established by PCS union in a government department. Unable to mount a defence, May simply repeated that it is important for people to be in work, ignoring rising in-work poverty as usual.“This country is seeing the rich get richer while the poor get poorer, while the government is in the pockets of a super rich elite,” Corbyn concluded. “More children in poverty. More pensioners in poverty. More people struggling to make ends meet. When is the government going to reverse the tax giveaway to the super rich and end the scandal of inequality in modern Britain?” A good rehearsal for the next general election campaign. Tags:PMQs /Theresa May /Austerity /Jeremy Corbyn /last_img read more