Savings program cuts school costs
FAMILIES could receive up to $500 towards back-to-school costs through a free program that allows applicants to develop sustainable savings habits.
The ten-month project has participants set savings goals, make regular deposits into a savings account and attend financial skills workshops.
At the end of the year, ANZ will match participants savings up to $500, which can be used to purchase education related items.
Saver Plus coordinator Sue Ogilvie from BGT Jobs + Training said the program helps reduce stress about schooling related expenses.
“This is ANZ extending their philanthropic arm, they’re trying to equip people to have better savings habits and assist them in their finances,” she said.
Founded in 2003, Saver Plus came to Ballarat in 2007 and has since had nearly 1000 local participants.
The savings project was established by ANZ and the Brotherhood of St Laurence and is offered locally by BGT Jobs + Training.
ANZ Ballarat East Branch Manager, Lynne Perovic said the benefits of the initiative go far beyond the back-to-school period.
“It’s wonderful to see families less stressed about back to school costs, and for us to be able to support them in enabling their kids to participate fully in school,” she said.
In order to purchase education related items with the matched savings, families can provide a receipt or quote as proof to then have their funds approved for them.
To be eligible for the program, participants must be 18 years or over, have a current Health Care or Pensioner Concession Card, have regular income from paid employment (them or their partner) and have a child at school or attend vocational education themselves.