New budgeting tool overcomes language barriers

The Minister for Revenue and Financial Services, The Hon. Kelly O’Dwyer has today launched ASIC’s MoneySmart ‘Simple Money Manager’.

The Simple Money Manager is a free online budgeting resource designed to help culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) Australians with everyday budgeting to take control of their finances.

ASIC consulted a wide range of government and community organisations to ensure the user experience was at the centre of the design and sought advice on the community languages chosen.

The resource is available in English and has been translated into eight community languages, representing established communities (Simplified and Traditional Chinese, Italian, Arabic, Vietnamese) and recently arrived groups (Somali, Dari and Sudanese Arabic). It includes in-language audio to help users easily interact with it.

Minister O’Dwyer said the Simple Money Manager provides a practical tool to assist with everyday financial management which addresses the limited written literacy for some language groups.

‘Improving the accessibility of financial tools will help people take control of their daily finances and alleviate any stress this brings. It will also build confidence to develop positive money habits which will stay with them for the rest of their lives,’ Minister O’Dwyer said.

One in eight Australians aged 14 and over access government information and services online, totaling around 324 million transactions a year[1]. More than half of these people experience accessibility issues, including consumers with limited English language capacity unable to interact with webpages available only in English. This supports ASIC’s approach to providing in-language resources for CALD consumers to help them make informed financial decisions.

‘Budgeting is the best way to get on top of your finances and take control of them. ASIC’s new digital resource is easy to use and will help you work how much money you have coming in and going out. It can be tailored to your unique situation to help you manage your expenses’, said Mr Peter Kell, ASIC’s Deputy Chairman.

ASIC will share the resource with key stakeholders, including the Federation of Ethnic Communities’ Councils of Australia (FECCA) and the Department of Human Services to assist community workers and financial counsellors educate their clients.

FECCA Chairperson Joe Caputo said the Simple Money Manager is an important tool to support the work of intermediaries with CALD communities to improve financial decision making. The new resource will be promoted through our networks, with the communities who will most benefit.

‘ASIC’s MoneySmart is to be commended for this innovative new resource. We believe it will help to break down the barriers CALD consumers may face when making financial decisions, which can be amplified by the additional challenge of English not being their primary language,’ said Mr Caputo.

The Simple Money Manager will be promoted online and on social media. It is available on ASIC’s MoneySmart website. For more financial tips visit moneysmart.gov.au. To access the tool direclty visit Simple Money Manager

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