Financial prosperity by the mob, for the mob
First Nations Foundation envisions a future of financial prosperity for Indigenous Australians designed and implemented ‘by the mob and for the mob’.
The organisation, which recognises education as the key to empowerment and creating intergenerational wealth, is helping give Indigenous communities the freedom to make their own positive financial choices.
“The best solutions come from the people who are affected rather than outside,” Equity Trustees Trust Manager Ferdi Hepworth said.
First Nations Foundation has received $250,000 in funding to bolster its financial literacy and superannuation outreach programs which will help it fulfil an initial goal of delivering financial prosperity to around 2000 Indigenous people.
The funding has helped the organisation launch a digital product to expand the reach of its Indigenous-focused financial literacy programs and will also help it undertake more research to support Indigenous access to mainstream financial services.
First Nations Foundation, which is led by a majority Indigenous board and executive team, has strong Indigenous and financial sector connections to tackle the issue, which has only recently come to mainstream attention.
A First Nations Foundation’s 2019 joint research project, Money Stories, found that around one in two Indigenous people suffer severe financial stress while about three-quarters struggle to even access financial services.
However, the Foundation’s work is already having a positive impact.
Its Big Super Day Out initiative has helped 1636 Indigenous Australians to reconnect with $24 million in their super accounts (or about $1 million for every community visited). It recently launched a new website, IndigenousSuper.com.au, after the coronavirus pandemic prompted a surge in early super release claims.
First Nations Foundation was supported by trusts managed by Equity Trustees, including the Ivor Ronald Evans Foundation, The Ivy H Thomas & Arthur A Thomas Trust, Rena Vessey Hall Trust, and The Ruth Watchorn Estate & the Robert Colin Ford Perpetual Trust.
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