Financial Literacy Resources

Posted: 8 November 2017

Author: Cheryl Lovstrom, Community Learning Network

Found in:

Comments: 3

Recommendations: 1

November is Financial Literacy Month!

Learning opportunities in financial literacy can help foundational learners who are interested in improving their money management skills. They might address issues like navigating the banking system, saving, spending habits, and credit card debt. Financial literacy programs are a great way to identify and connect with learners who require further learning in numeracy and other transferable skills. 

CALPs can use their CALP funding to offer Financial Literacy which fits in the Community Capacity Building category of the CALP guidelines. Financial Literacy focuses on developing strategies for managing money such as:  

  • Making day-to-day choices about how to spend their money
  • Making informed choices about purchasing the products and services that make the most sense for their own needs
  • Planning ahead about how to use their hard-earned dollars for life goals, such as buying a home or preparing for retirement
  • Evaluating the financial information and advice they get, whether from friends, the media or professionals**

These financial strategies include numeracy tasks such as budgeting, estimating savings, or calculating interest.Trained and adept facilitators of financial literacy programs will gauge learners’ abilities to see if they have the foundational numeracy skills needed to complete these tasks. If we were to break down budgeting for example, it requires adding monthly expenses and income, subtracting expenses from income. If learners struggle with any of these basic math skills they will have difficulty completing a budget and also learning the strategies that are based on budgeting.  

This is where CALPs have something of tremendous value to offer learners in financial literacy programs. When a need for further numeracy instruction is required CALPs have a couple of options.  

  1. CALP staff can refer learners to foundational numeracy programs – either a one-on-one tutor or possibly a class.  
  2. CALPs could modify the financial literacy program by intentionally adding instruction on basic math skills (as they relate to financial literacy) and create time within the program to teach, practice and review the new skills over a number of weeks. Programs that build on basic math skills fall under the required programming area of Numeracy.  

If you are looking to offer financial literacy in your community, here are three programs that may suit your needs:

Momentum Financial Literacy Training (Train-the-Trainer) 

  • Developed by Momentum
  • Cost is $175 for training and includes license to use/distribute Momentum material
  • Receive training in 5 core areas – assets, budgeting, banking, credit, consumerism
  • Participants learn:
    • Foundational financial literacy education
    • How financial literacy is used as a poverty reduction intervention
    • Adult learning principles and facilitation techniques using specific interactive exercises
    • The sustainable livelihoods framework and how to use it to build individual assets and overcome challenges
    • Facilitate to groups or adapt the materials for one-on-one participant work using Momentum’s financial literacy curriculum
  • Usage rights stay with the CALP BUT they must have a trained facilitator to use the materials. If your Momentum person facilitator leaves, you must train someone else

ABC Money Matters 

  • Developed by ABC Life Literacy, TD Bank, and Government of Canada
  • Organizations apply to request a free workshop
  • CALP staff/volunteers deliver the workshops
  • CALPs get paid an honorarium for each group workshop delivered
  • Requires a learning centre agreement to run workshops
  • Money Matters curriculum:
    • 4 workshops totalling 8 hours of content (ELL content is 2 workshops, 4 hours total):
      • Spending plans, banking basics, borrowing money, RESPs and other ways to save
      • ELL workshops: how to bank and save in Canada, how to build credit in Canada
    • approachable, discussion-based activities
    • topics based on extensive research and feedback from learners
    • literacy level 2 (grade 6-8 reading level)
    • all new terminology is defined—in the text, and in a glossary
    • Delivered by individual organization’s staff, with optional support from TD Bank Group Volunteer-Tutors 
    • Adaptable according to the needs of each specific group 
    • Free. We ship the materials needed to run the program to organizations across the country
  • Additional materials and tip sheets are free to download for one-on-one work
  • Materials available for Adult Learners, Indigenous Communities, and Newcomers & New Canadians
  • Also available as an online course: 
  • Online access requires free account, but allows learners to stop and go back to their lesson at any time

Financial Basics 

  • Developed by the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada
  • CALP staff/volunteers deliver the workshops
  • Materials are free to download – step by step presenter’s manual and participants’ handouts, presentation slides, and e-learning videos
  • 10 sections dealing with 7 financial issues – budgeting, 2 x managing your cost of living (be a smart consumer, needs and wants), credit and debt management, saving and investing, financial planning, protecting yourself
  • Participant manual is written in plain, clear language
  • Also have a page of tools and calculators to help learners with their financial decisions: 
  • Printed materials can be requested – case by case basis, take 4-6 weeks to process and ship 

Be sure to comment below on your experience with any of these resources, or share others you have used and liked.

* Taken from Financial Planning Standards Council website on November 7, 2017: 

** Taken from: Financial Consumer Agency of Canada website on November 7, 2017: 

Cheryl Lovstrom
CLN Regional Support Staff
Central Alberta


Sign in to view 3 comments


Resource Review: ABC Life Literacy
Posted: 29 January 2019 Comments: 2 Recommendations: 0