Canadian Families Learn How to "Make it Count"

WINNIPEG, Oct. 14 /CNW/ - Talking with youth about budgeting, debit card use and common sense spending has been made easier with the Canada-wide release of Make it Count, an interactive money mentoring program and information resource from the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA). Launched in conjunction with Investor Education Month in October, the Make it Count program includes a parent's guide, an instructor's guide and an online daily budgeting program that uses everyday situations like errands to engage youth in discussions about money management.

The Make it Count program was successfully introduced in Manitoba in early 2009 and the CSA is working together to make the program available across Canada. "When The Manitoba Securities Commission began to receive orders for the program from across Canada and the U.S., it was evident that Canadians were ready to start talking about financial literacy and a national roll out of the program was the obvious next step," said Jean St-Gelais, Chair of the CSA and President & Chief Executive Officer of the Autorité des marchés financiers (Québec). "The CSA is a proponent of financial literacy and we wanted to make sure everyone had access to the Make it Count resources."

The Make it Count program centers around a series of activities, tips and lesson plans that are simple to follow and more importantly, simple to teach. "One of the most exciting new elements of the program is an online, interactive money management tool that allows mentors and youth to set up a daily budget, start and track savings goals and chat with other money mentors in an online forum," notes St-Gelais. "Users can see where their money is going, track their financial progress and provide their own insights and activity ideas to the online community."

According to a recent survey conducted by the CSA, there is a need for financial skills educational resources that are family-friendly. The survey found that 78 percent of Canadians believe that teaching financial skills is among the most important things a parent can do for their child. And less than half of parents with children 18 or younger have actually taught their children about personal finances and investing.

Getty Stewart, a Manitoba parent who has been using the guide since its initial release, believes the Make it Count program can help families improve the statistics and help children gain lifelong skills. "Everyone needs a bit of help with money management, even as adults we have to work hard at staying on budget. The more we can engage our families in money discussions, the better chance our kids will have in their financial future."

The Make it Count resources, including the interactive online budgeting program can be accessed at MakeitCountOnline.ca. All resources are free and available in both English and French.

About the Canadian Securities Administrators

The CSA, the council of the securities regulators of Canada's provinces and territories, co-ordinates and harmonizes regulation for the Canadian capital markets.

/NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available at http://photos.newswire.ca. Images are free to accredited members of the media/

SOURCE Canadian Securities Administrators

For further information: For further information: For photos, videos, downloads and more information go to bcg.ca/media_centre/csa; Make it Count Media Inquiries: Ainsley Cunningham, Manitoba Securities Commission, (204) 945-4733; Sylvain Théberge, Autorité des marchés financiers, (514) 940-2176; CSA Media Inquiries: Carolyn Shaw-Rimmington, Ontario Securities Commission, (416) 593-2361; Mark Dickey, Alberta Securities Commission, (403) 297-4481; Ainsley Cunningham, Manitoba Securities Commission, (204) 945-4733; Donn MacDougall, Northwest Territories Securities Office, (867) 920-8984; Katharine Tummon, Consumer, Corporate and Insurance Services, Registrar of Securities, Prince Edward Island, (902) 368-4542; Fred Pretorius, Yukon Securities Registry, (867) 667-5225; Natalie MacLellan, Nova Scotia Securities Commission, (902) 424-8586; Sylvain Théberge, Autorité des marchés financiers, (514) 940-2176; Ken Gracey, British Columbia Securities Commission, (604) 899-6577; Wendy Connors-Beckett, New Brunswick Securities Commission, (506) 643-7745; Barbara Shourounis, Saskatchewan Financial Services Commission, (306) 787-5842; Doug Connolly, Financial Services Regulation Div., Newfoundland and Labrador, (709) 729-2594; Louis Arki, Nunavut Securities Office, (867) 975-6587


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