The Wellbeing Café is at 1pm on Tuesday 14th November 2023, when Hiren Panchal hosts Sarah Marks, CEO of the children’s financial education charity RedSTART. Sarah will present:
‘Why teaching children about money leads to brighter futures.’
This event is accredited for structured CPD hours.
Your key learning points:
- Insights into children’s money habits gained through RedSTART research with The Policy Institute, King’s College.
- An understanding of the Social Return on Investment for children’s money education.
- How educating primary school children about money helps to minimise risks of pensioner poverty.
Sarah Marks has been CEO of the children’s financial education charity RedSTART since August 2021. Previously, she undertook the role of Development Director, where she was responsible for developing the case for support and fundraising strategy, and prior to that she worked for RedSTART as a volunteer. Sarah has over 20 years of experience leading client service teams in the finance sector, most recently as Global Head of Client Service at Insight Investment.
She is passionate about education and its role in levelling up and is hugely excited about the potential for transformation in people’s lives that could occur if they are taught as children about how money works. Sarah gave me a few moments of her busy day to share her passions, insights and reasons for joining RedSTART.
How would you summarise your passions, both in and out of work?
Improving social mobility, the wellbeing of my family and friends, and time by the sea.
What prompted you to volunteer for RedSTART in the first place?
I wanted to do something that was purposeful and had impact, in an area that mattered to me.
Why are you so passionate about children and money education?
The world they are growing up into is becoming increasingly complex and being in control of your finances gives you confidence and freedom. The children we work with don’t make more foolish decisions than their better-off peers, but when they foul up they have no safety net. I have spoken to parents who have told me that they got into unmanageable debt in their late teens and it ruled their lives and took them decades to pay off. Their financial position as young adults will affect their choices and their mental health. It will determine the jobs they take, whether they continue in further education, where they live and even the relationships they begin to form.
What are the most challenging parts of the role of being the charity’s CEO?
Cashflow management, staying focused (it’s hard not to want to do everything for everyone who asks for help) and the frustrations of dealing with short term thinking and planning in Government.
What do you find most satisfying about it?
The fact that you know that some of these children will remember their lessons long after they have left school, and you have potentially started a chain of thinking that could change the course of their lives.
What one thing do you wish you’d been told about money when you were a child?
To start budgeting and saving early to benefit from the power of compounding
What’s your understanding of financial wellbeing?
Being able to sleep easy at night because you have the freedom to live the way you want to live and the comfort of knowing that you can withstand life’s financial ups and downs
What are you doing to advance your own financial wellbeing?
I have a financial advisor and have recently put in place regular reviews as I move closer to retirement.