I work for The Money Charity as a Freelance Financial Education Consultant in Gloucestershire. Having retired from full time employment in 2018, I wanted to continue working part-time to compliment my monthly pension, which I started to receive from age 55. Having contributed to my employer’s pension scheme from the age of 18, I took the opportunity to take early retirement when it became available. Suffice to say, investing in the pension from 18 and taking the opportunity to retire at 55 are a couple of my better financial decisions!
The Money Charity opportunity arose from a chance conversation I had with a neighbour. It provided me with the kind of charity role I was seeking and enabled the charity to provide financial education to 11-19 year olds across Gloucestershire schools, colleges and community groups.
The role is very enjoyable, but requires good planning and organisational skills due to the large region I cover and the diversity of places wanting workshops. One day I can be delivering to a school in a rural part of the countryside, the next to an inner city school. Some of the schools are situated in beautiful parts of the countryside, making it a real pleasure to travel through small Cotswold villages on the way to delivering workshops!
I feel very fortunate working with The Money Charity. To be able to share financial knowledge with so many students and learn from them how they earn, spend or save their money always makes for interesting discussions and conversations. The interactive activities that The Money Charity have developed really do make learning about money fun. There is no better feeling than watching a group of students ripping up a £20 note (not a real one thankfully) to learn where their money is spent once they start to earn a wage or live independently.
It is a great job. The other consultants across the country are a fantastic group of passionate individuals who share their financial knowledge and experience with you and offer great advice and tips when working with new schools for the first time. The support we all receive from The Money Charity staff team is excellent and the resources we are given for each workshop make delivering financial education fun and engaging.
This week I returned to a school (Maidenhill at Stonehouse) at the start of the new academic year and was greeted by a Year 10 student who announced – “hey everyone, it’s the money dude, this is going to be a fun lesson” – I loved the fact they remembered who I was and that learning about money was fun.
(Mark is a Freelance Financial Education Consultant for The Money Charity.)