The Ghaya programme: securing a better future

Wajd Al Hashmi is one of ten specialised volunteer trainers – recruited in partnership with the UAE Banks Federation – to work on the Ghaya financial literacy programme.

“I believe that this programme is important to anyone who wants to improve their financial wellbeing at an entry level,” he says.

Volunteers, like Wajd, were trained to guide participants on the Ghaya programme through six modules of learning so they could become financially independent. As well as helping others, he found the experience personally useful too.

“The programme has given me an opportunity to deliver knowledge that helped the beneficiaries develop their skills with personal finances.”

How the Ghaya programme works

Over three months, the Abu Dhabi-based participants expanded their knowledge on managing money, including:

  • living within their means
  • how to invest and save wisely
  • personal life cycles and financial needs
  • understanding financial products
  • making crucial financial decisions
  • dealing with money and debt mismanagement
  • exploring different banking and investment options.

The Ghaya graduates will now put their skills and knowledge to use. But they won’t just be applying the learning to their own finances.

They will also encourage and inform their families – and other members of the community – about managing personal finance.

To help them do that, they’ll have the opportunity to pass on their learning as volunteers on future Ghaya programmes.

Helping to secure a good financial future

By raising awareness of financial literacy among communities, Ghaya will contribute to the growth of Abu Dhabi’s economy.

Good money management helps to alleviate the stress that comes from debt and money worries. So, by increasing financial literacy, Ghaya will also improve the wellbeing of Abu Dhabi’s residents and citizens.

Launched in November by the Authority of Social Contribution, Ma’an, Ghaya is a three-month programme.

Ma’an worked in partnership with the Social Support Authority (SSA), Abu Dhabi Global Market Academy (ADGMA), The London Institute of Banking & Finance (LIBF) and UAE Banks Federation (UBF).

The UAE Banks Federation was instrumental in recruiting and training the specialised volunteers.

ADGM Academy played a key role as well. Hamad Sayah Al Mazrouei, COO of Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) and Managing Director of ADGM Academy, commented: “We are confident that this programme will ignite a generation of financially savvy and capable Emirati nationals – further contributing to Abu Dhabi’s wider efforts in establishing a knowledge-based economy.”

The first Ghaya graduation

The first Ghaya programme is now complete, and the first graduation ceremony took place in April.

During the graduation ceremony, volunteers like Wajd were awarded a Ghaya Volunteer Trainer digital badge by LIBF in recognition of their outstanding efforts over the 12 weeks.

Alex Fraser, LIBF’s Chief Executive, said it was an honour to contribute to Ghaya, because “financial literacy and community wellbeing are at the heart of our organisation’s pillars”.

This is only the first of many Ghaya programmes, which are set to run three times a year.

Her Excellency Salama Al Ameemi is the Director General of Ma’an. “This is only the start of the ‘Ghaya’ programme,” she said.

“We have big plans to take this initiative to a wider audience as we continue on our journey of creating positive, measurable and sustainable social impact across many facets of life for many communities in Abu Dhabi.”