By Aarya Hallikeri:
“I made my first investment at the age of 11. I was wasting time until then.”
The above quote of Warren Buffet, one of the world’s richest men, stresses on the importance of saving money early on in life.
Ramesh Vaddodagi, a student of Bachelor of Social Work at Jai Gurudev College used to tutor and tell stories to school children at the Dyamavva Devi temple in the village Managuli, in Vijayapura district. During these sessions, he noticed that children were too poor to afford notebooks and pens required for their schooling. This created a need in front of him to empower them in financial matters. Thus, the idea of a piggy bank for children was born and he took up a LEAD project on the same. For this, he sought the help of a 27 member local youth group – Yuvashakti Sanghatane – of which he was also a part.
The children piggy bank allows children to start depositing amounts from Rs. 1. Notepads are provided with each depositor’s photo. The notepad acts as their passbook and four phone numbers are written on the last page of the notepad. These phone numbers can be used by children to call Ramesh and get the saved money when required. Children can draw not only saved money, but also four to five times of their balance. This has not only financially empowered them, but also made them responsible.
This initiative of LEADer Ramesh Vaddodagi has got off on a roaring success. Not only children, even women have started planning on investing in his bank.