In 2006, following the collapse of the Farepak Hamper scheme, the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) launched a public awareness campaign to ensure that low-income consumers, especially women in the 35-55 age group, were able to make informed decisions around their short-term saving options.
“I feel more confident about money, about ways to save and spend money wisely.” Participant, Save Xmas project
Citizens Advice promoted the campaign via the financial capability forums that cover England and Wales. Forum partners, from local Citizens Advice and other member agencies, were selected to deliver the presentations, and received OFT funding.
The 45 minute sessions were aimed at helping frontline workers and end service users to:
- identify the alternatives to Christmas hamper saving schemes
- consider their own needs, preferences and attitudes to risk
- understand the features of different savings options
- access further help or information about their savings options.
Impact of the training on behaviour
- Four in ten (42%) changed their saving habits following the training.
- The training gave participants the opportunity to reflect upon their financial situation.
- Participants described the training as a trigger that motivated them to face up to their financial difficulties and take action to improve their finances.
- There was an increase in the take up of saving options.
"The Save Xmas campaign continues to reach people with low levels of knowledge and take-up of saving options…All end users have greater levels of knowledge and confidence in savings options than the general public. The research conducted with the year one cohort shows that the soft outcomes (i.e. on knowledge and confidence) of the campaign are sustained in the medium and long term" IPSOS Mori, March 2010
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